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TJ’s Spring Bee Report

8 Feb

Albuquerque top bar bee sage TJ offers the following report: 

Poppies in my garden

Poppies in my Albuquerque garden

What’s blooming now?

  • The Globe Willow trees turned from yellow to green in the past week.
  • Anne C. noticed that the Silver Maple in her yard has bloomed and the bees are on it full time.
  • Wild mustard is in bloom. The bees will find it of course and spoil the early spring honey. Let the bees keep this first bit of honey.
  • I have dug up many dandelions. No blooms yet, but they will be out soon. Not good for the honey either.
  • Thousands of Oriental Poppies are up in my garden. Also bulbing plants are sprouting up. Lilac plants in my neighborhood are ready to blossom.

Still too dry for a good honey flow in the spring. Forecast is for rain and snow for the next several days. Could come in time.

When is swarm season in Albuquerque?

Swarm season (in Abq) usually starts around Good Friday/Easter.

Time for spring feeding

Not everyone feeds their bees, but now is a good time for supplemental feed. Try sugar water at 1:1. After the weather is warmer, try four parts of water to one part of sugar (same ratio as nectar), as this causes the queen to start laying a bit early for strong spring buildup.

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4 Responses to “TJ’s Spring Bee Report”

  1. John Fleck February 8, 2009 at 7:01 pm #

    Chantal –

    Does TJ keep track from year to year of when these phenological (my new favorite sciency word) events happen? It would be interesting to see how it changes over time.

  2. Chantal February 8, 2009 at 8:41 pm #

    Good question! I’ve just alerted TJ to your query. Let’s see what he says…

  3. Chantal February 9, 2009 at 7:35 pm #

    Howdy, John. TJ says:

    “I have not kept records on the spring greening. We can rely on Anne’s certain knowledge about her silver maple. The earliest I have ever put tomato plants in the soil is Mar 15. Lost about one third to mild frost around the first of April, perhaps five years ago.”

  4. Gordo February 9, 2009 at 9:25 pm #

    Sigh … There’s still two feet of snow on the ground here. I suppose I have more time to plan for spring, though. 🙂

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