The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Packing away wingstem nectar

Newly drawn comb

I gave up on feeding our bees when I realized the only insects coming to the feeder were yellow jackets.  As one our readers pointed out, Wingstem is "one of the underrated honey plants of North America", and since we have plenty of those yellow flowers around, our bees find sugar water pretty unappealing at the moment.

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That does leave me in a bit of a bind --- I can't do anything at all to ensure our colony fills their third box so they'll be ready for winter.  Luckily, they don't seem to need my help.  When I took some photos through the screened bottom of our Warre hive this past weekend, I could see that the bees had drawn out all except three frames of the third box.

I'm the kind of person who likes to work ahead and be done early, so it seems a bit crazy that the bees are cramming half of the year's labor into a few short weeks right before the the days become too cool for flying.  But you can't mandate the work habits of the bees.

Our chicken waterer makes chores fast and easy so you can spend your time enjoying the birds' antics.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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