The Inspiring Honeybee Comeback Story

Last May, I shared with you my heartbreaking story about losing 12 out of 13 honeybee colonies over the long harsh Minnesota winter. Since that time, I also lost my sole surviving hive as well. After building up my apiary over the past six years, I was forced to start over. 

Over the past few months, I have had many inquiries about how my new colonies are doing so far this year. And I am so very pleased to report that my newly established apiary is thriving beyond my wildest dreams! 

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Sticky Fun Yields Honey to Die For (At Least if You're a Bee)

The sugar house is stacked high with honey super boxes full of ripe frames of honey. The hardest step in harvesting honey is behind me, so now the sticky fun begins.

Each frame of honey is comprised of an intricate network of honeycomb with each individual cell is filled with honey and the entire frame is sealed with a wax coating. So how does the beautiful block of wax-covered honey get into a jar?

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Honey Harvesting 101: Smoke, Stink, Blow, Brush

I am so loving the “farm to table” movement that is helping us all better understand where our food comes from. Everyone knows that farmers grow food, but there is a lot more to the story about how that food gets to our tables. Taking that concept one step further, everyone know that honeybees make honey, but how does the honey actually get inside those bear-shaped containers?

Crops, we all know, are harvested whenever the vegetables, fruits, and grains are ripe. It is no different for honey. But since bees make the honey, how do we know when it is "ripe" and ready to harvest? Easy. The bees decide when it’s ready, and they seal the ripe honey cell with wax. They do this cell-by-cell until the entire frame is capped.

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Eat Local Honey and 7 Other Ways You Can Help Save the Bees

The USDA just released the survey results of winter honeybee colony losses, and the news is bad. Nationwide, the losses of managed honeybee colonies totaled almost 34 percent from October 2009 to April 2010 – an increase from the 29 percent loss reported in 2008-2009. The complete results of this survey conducted by the Apiary Inspectors of America (AIA) and the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is yet to be published, but the abstract is now available.

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Do Honeybees Fly South for the Winter?

As a 20-year marketing professional living in the Twin Cities, going to the grocery store used to be all business. I had my list of items to get, but I also made it a habit to take note of product packaging, shelf placement, and displays before heading to the checkout.

In 2000, that all changed when my husband and I bought a 172-acre farm and moved 70 miles north to Mora, Minnesota. Here, we established our certified organic farm where we grow apples, plums, and veggies; and we produce maple syrup each spring. I have also joined the incredibly fascinating world of beekeeping.

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