[permaculture] Honneybeels and Phenology

Kevin Topek ktopek at houston.rr.com
Mon Mar 12 21:04:06 EDT 2007


Do you have any idea how hard it is to get those drag queen bees into, hose,
heels and wigs? There are just no pumps that come in their size.  French
bees are from... France. In theory, they are a smaller varietal. Canada has
some of them working, but they are hard to find in the US. It is a quest. If
not available, I may try and obtain the Yugo-Russian bees, or just get more
Buckfast, English, bees. My recent stupidity has me taking it slow. All for
the best. Happy spring!


----- Original Message -----
From: "Eugene Monaco" <efmonaco at comcast.net>
To: <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Monday, March 12, 2007 1:41 PM
Subject: [permaculture] Honneybeels and Phenology

> One of the benefits of keeping bees is what you learn about flowering
> and maybe the accompanying phenology.  I'd like to see more discussion of
> the latter.  Mollison always says to observe nature for patterns of design
> and the knowing of what to do, which is hard to do when you're not out it
> enough.
> Spring is just unfolding here in the Tennessee valley.  The daffodils are
> blooming as are the maples.  The pussy willows are out and the bees are
> gathering the pollen from all of them.  I've watched the bees come back to
> the hive with yellow pollen in their pollen sacs and also a bright red
> pollen, which I think is coming from some of the daffodils with red
> interiors.  There are also crocuses with purple flowers.  The conifers
> haven't opened up yet but when the do there will be yellow pollen all over
> everything outside.
> I was reading an article in Bee Culture that advised of a relationship
> I had never thought of before, even though I'm sure many of you have; and
> that is that the pollen "flow" comes before the nectar flow, which I
> is what the locals call the honey flow.  I know that the plants don't
> produce honey so what else could it mean?
> The locals said to make sure you have your bee population up (as high as
> 80,000) by the time the "honey flow" starts, which they say is April 15
> around here, also the last day of potential frost.  I know that global
> warming and climate change will blow this one around, but for the sake of
> discussion bear with me.
> Well the honey flow doesn't really start on April 15th, it's underway
> now, but I suppose it's on a much smaller scale so as to consider it
> insignificant compared to what's yet to come.
> Anyhow, the article was saying essentially that in order to have the bee
> population up for the honey flow, you have to have it up sooner than that
> for the pollen flow, which is a number of weeks earlier.  The pollen has
> protein in it that makes larvae and bees.  Makes sense.
> Well I scoured the web for information on tables of pollen counts to try
> find the historical peak and so far I'm coming up with squat.  Does
> have a background in this or can find where such data is available.
> Otherwise, I'm back to talking to the Keepers again (they're getting tired
> of me.)
> BTW, what the hell are French Queens?  Are they something like the Drag
> Queens of Bellaire?
> Gene Monaco
> Knoxville, TN
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