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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I'm a dummy, are you?

We apologize for the paucity of articles here at backyard farming lately. As you have seen on some previous posts we finally purchased our homestead. We have been busy ripping out old flooring, putting in new flooring, texturing walls, painting walls, moving our belongings (too many) and making sure our children live through the whole process.The problem is, we don't have the Internet yet (we are working on it) so we can't post on our blog. I am breaking the law and posting this article at work.

Now that we have a home, Marisa and I have the hard choice of prioritizing where we want to get started. We have huge dreams but know that time and money are a constraint so we can't do everything we want at once. As far as animals go, we want to get chickens and bees next year at a minimum, and hopefully we can build a fence and get a milk goat or two.

I was talking to a neighbor about his bees. He happens to be the president of the Beekepers association in our county. He gave me the following advice. He told me to read "Beekeeping for Dummies." He said it is important to start building or order a beehive before by January or February next year. He also told me that I need to order my bees by that time as well since many bee sellers get all of there orders early in the year and stop selling them once a certain quota is met. I am glad I talked to him. Do any of you bee experts out there have any suggestions for us as we start the process of getting bees? We love to learn from all of you. Leave a comment.

In the meantime, be patient with us as we get our home caught up and we will start posting more.



Meg said...

I don't know anything about bees but I'm really interested in learning. I'd love to have hives someday.

~ H said...

I feel your pain with the house and your visions. We are trying to make our house our home and keep hitting that time or $ brick wall. I feel like you are a very brave family! Bees rank right up there with snakes for me. My husband wants bee hives... I would rather die! Best wishes. I will be looking forward to great posts from the new beekeepers!

Rural Revival said...

I planned on starting a hive this year, and attended the first meeting of the year of my local beekeeping group in February and I learned then that you should already have your hive ordered. So you're definitely ahead of the game. Also, a local university and the provincial beekeeping association in my area offer a course in the spring each year, unfortunately by February, they were completely full.
I also waited too late in the spring to order supplies, and the local supplier was sold out of much of her equipment, so in a nutshell, the early bird gets the worm..or the bee!

Wendy said...

When you install your bees into your new hive, it would be best to have someone with you who knows what needs to be done. Relying on a YouTube video for instructions may result in the loss of your queen and without a queen the hive will simply die. Very sad, and I wish it was information I didn't know ... from first hand experience.

Other than that, bees are pretty easy as backyard livestock go, and while our hive was viable, it was pretty amazing to watch them do their work. We had a lot of comb building and nectar gathering and honey making.

Andrea said...

You will LOVE being a beekeeper! This was our first year as beekeepers and we just harvested about 30 pounds of honey. Join your local beekeeping association and start attending meetings now. Order your bees in January or February and get your hives as soon as possible so you can get to know the pieces/parts before you have to go out in the field and set them up. If you can, watch somebody set their queen and put bees into a hive. It makes so much more sense after you've seen it the first time.

Mike said...

Thanks for the feedback everyone. It sounds like the most important thing is to get started now. I have been told that our area in the high desert of Utah isn't the best for honey so we will get a little honey. Still, it will be good for our garden to have them.I think once we know how to do it I will hit up some of the farmers lower in the valley to see if I can put some hives in their fields where there are more flowers. All in due time.