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Wednesday, May 02, 2012

The Bees and the garden

I haven't updated on my bees recently.
The hive survived the winter. Hooray. I am not sure what happened in March when we had a few good days. Anyway, it would seem like we now have a new queen and the colony is building. My youngest paniced a bit when he couldn't see the queen in mid April but reported that there is now a healthy amount of brood. Because it is a small colony, I had him put in an entrance block -- this makes it easier for the bees to defend the hive against intruders, including mice.
The big problem is the cold and rain. Wettest April for 100 years and May seems now better. However there are plenty of flowers out in the garden....when they can fly. Bees don't fly in the rain.
One of the big problems for bees can be when gardens become green deserts -- few flowering plants and lots of evergreen or grass. Bees need flowers.
Speaking of flowers, I was really pleased to discover a trillium in the winter garden. We had planted trillium bulbs years ago but nothing happpened. Then suddenly this year, we have 3 delicate flowers. Patience can be a virtue in gardening.
The apple blossom is almost out in back paddock. This morning a male and female bullfinch were busy snacking on the blossom. They missed the damson blossom but they are endangered so I can't get cross about the apple blossom. Plus they were snacking on the tree which had a lot of apples last year.

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