Yesterday I drove across to Tatworth, for the first time without the assistance of my gps, where I have placed a top bar hive in my new apprentice, Sarah’s, Bee Happy Plants, nursery. I stocked it with a nucleus a little over a week ago.
Sarah has given them their very own water feature! It is a large trough filled with gravel into which water drips, fed from her well. The bees won’t go thirsty!
We could see from the outside that the bees were doing ok as they were flying happily and bringing in pollen. So it was just idle curiosity and to educate Sarah that made us open up. We soon spotted the queen, daubed with yellow paint and Sarah noted how large she was compared with the workers. They were drawing wax and, although I wasn’t able to measure it, the cell size appears to my eye to be much smaller than that printed on commercially sold foundation.
Sarah wants to make her own hive and tells me that she is a good and capable handywoman. I hope I have persuaded her to go for my design of a half cylinder with a 17″ top bar forming the diameter, which, to my mind, is much better than the larger trapezoidal type made of plywood that is on sale everywhere.
Sarah has ordered (from Amazon) a copy of my (co-authored with Dave MacFawn of S.Carolina) book: ‘Getting the Best from Your Bees’ and has been told that it has now arrived in nearby Chard for her to pick up. I shall be able to autograph it for her next time I go over.