This Is What I’m Doing This Weekend

Two Supers Full Of Honey

Yesterday, I took two shallow supers full of honey off of the original hive.  It went fairly smoothly. (Despite being Friday, the 13th!)

I was surprised to have so much honey in the middle of July, especially since I had a fairly large harvest in the spring. But this is a huge hive, and we’ve had a strong nectar flow since April.

The hive was absolutely packed to the rafters with brood and honey.  This extraction gave me the opportunity to provide more room and to get my supers straightened out.

I’m sure I had a reason to do it at the time, but my supers were in crazy order. I had a deep on the bottom, then a medium, then two shallows and then a deep on the very top!

The bottom deep was full of brood and the medium was full of brood and honey.  I took the medium out to make the split. It was perfect for that purpose!

The next two shallow supers were completely full of honey. No brood at all. (I don’t use a Queen excluder.) I took those boxes off to extract.

The top deep was full of brood and honey! How did the bees know to skip the shallow supers?  Who knows??

Anyway, I put the second deep on top of the first one and then put an empty medium on top of that. After I finish the extraction, I’ll add another two shallow supers on top of those.  This order makes a lot more sense!!

My spring honey was dark. It looked a lot like maple syrup.  This honey is light gold, almost white. It is ambrosial!

Well, I’ve got a lot of sticky work ahead of me. More later!

24 thoughts on “This Is What I’m Doing This Weekend

  1. Oh yum that looks delicious. What a fascinating pastime, keeping bees and harvesting honey. Lucky, lucky you.

  2. I had your bee’s honey with butter on crumpets this morning and in my tea. Oh, it tastes lovely! :)

  3. oceannah says:

    OMG! does that look like heaven or what! My mouth is watering and I can smell the honey from here. Although we’ve been hiveless now for two years (ccd) you’ve inspired me to re-colonize the hive next summer. There was a quasi plan to take the bees from a friends house, but that still hasn’t come to pass….I miss the sisters…and the honey.
    *anna

  4. bigsmileu1 says:

    Fascinating descriptions! The honey looks light and tasty. Looking forward to more. Enjoy the day! :)

  5. willowbatel says:

    Its funny that they would skip the supers in the middle for the deep box on top. I wonder why that is. I suppose the good news is that the queen has to walk all over the hive to get where she needs to be, which means that there is plenty of queen substance to go around!
    Do you have an extractor that you use? Last year I used the ‘scrape and strain’ method, which worked fine. I’m wondering whether I should invest in an extractor though. Dealing with 3 hives worth of wax and honey in my little kitchen is going to be chaos…

    • I do have an extractor. Really, I can’t imaging extracting without one. This is hard enough!!

      • willowbatel says:

        The trouble is, I have a Warre hive that has no foundation, so when I harvest I’ll have nothing but wax and honey to separate. I can’t very well use a traditional extractor for that… can I? I don’t want to invest in a traditional extractor that I’ll only be able to use for my langstroth when I have two (+) Warre’s that I’ll have to deal with.

      • Good point. No, I think the crush and strain method is the only way to extract from a Warre hive. But it’s easier when you don’t have a traditional Langstroth frame to deal with.

      • willowbatel says:

        I just scraped everything off of the langstroth frames last year when I was harvesting. I’ll probably just do that again and mix the honey’s from the different hives. Except for my aunts honey, which will be kept separate since its from such a different location. I’m interested to see what kind of honey she gets compared to my molasses colored stuff.

  6. [...] This Is What I’m Doing This Weekend (romancingthebee.com) [...]

  7. [...] This Is What I’m Doing This Weekend (romancingthebee.com) Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailPrintStumbleUponDiggRedditLinkedInTumblrPinterestLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. This entry was posted in Bee, Beekeeper, beekeepers, beekeeping, Bees, Buckfast Bees, Honey, Honey Extraction, Insects, Robbing, Sustainability, Urban Beekeeping and tagged Agriculture, Bee, Beehive, Beekeeper, Beekeepers, Beekeeping, Bees, Buckfast bee, Home and Garden, Honey, Honey bee, Honey extraction, Queen bee.Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment [...]

  8. Rachel says:

    The spring honey you gave to me last month is all gone :( It went in chocolate chip cookies, in honey cake, but it tasted by far the best on bread with creamy butter. :D

    • I’m so glad you liked it!!
      My newly harvested honey is much lighter, and very good, but I think I like my spring honey better. The flavor is more complex.
      Hope all is well!!

  9. [...] When we’re ready to harvest a comb, we pull one of the top bars from the hive and make sure that it is at least 80% capped.  I mentioned in an earlier post about honey and its water content and that the bees know when its just right and cap the cells.  When forager bees bring back nectar from flowers, it is transferred over to a worker bee in the hive and placed into the honeycomb cells.  Nectar is to honey like sap is to maple syrup – there is a transformation that it undergoes before it is ready to harvest. Capped Honeycomb photo from fellow bee-blogger Romancing The Bee [...]

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