Monday, October 7, 2013

Sweet Rewards

After much deliberation we decided to pull some honey from our main hive this year. We took a medium box to be sure the hive had more than enough honey for the winter. I don't mind feeding the bees but I think it is better for the health of the hive to have honey for the winter.

The weather forecast for the weekend was sunny so we decided that if we were going to take a box of honey it should be this weekend. It was our last chance. So on Friday the bee escape was installed and worked fabulously well. Saturday the bees were out of the box so we were able to bring the frames inside to warm up overnight. I love the way it smells. We sat the box on top of our dryer and the whole laundry room had a sweet beeswax smell.

This was certainly an experiment for us. Neither of us have ever extracted honey and the only extractions we've seen were on YouTube so we were just trying to figure out just what worked for use. Turns out I like using the uncapping fork but Jon likes the uncapping knife. It also took a couple of spins to realize we had installed the frames backwards in the extractor. Once we found our groove the honey started flowing.

We were surprised by how much honey came from that one medium box. In the end we got about 16lbs of honey which will be more than enough to get us through the winter. We have a dark amber honey that seems to have a bit of an herbal taste to it. I think the bees loved my lavender, chive, mint and oregano more than I thought. It was just such an amazing process. All the work these bees did to bring in the nectar, cure it and cap it. Such a gift. Thank you little bees, we won't waste a single drop.

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