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Running On Empty

I’ve run out of beekeeping kit. I started this year with 3 hives on my roof. Today there are 8. Only a National nuc box and a single Keiler breeding nuc remain in reserve. That’s the beekeeping equivalent of the small change down the back of your sofa.

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Boom And Bust

No doubt that 2014 has been a great beekeeping year so far. Spring came early and stayed put.

The whole of nature is about a month ahead of schedule. That's good news - and potentially bad news, too.

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The Bee Brand

Whoever masterminded the original honeybee PR campaign did a fantastic job.

Taking a 20 million-year-old venomous insect and transforming it into an instantly recognizable international brand with a sky-high approval rating demonstrates marketing skills of the highest order.

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Holly

This isn’t exactly the holly time of year. The christmassy archetype of tight red berries, chiming merrily against green-glossy spikes, belongs to another, brisker season. Holly is sinewy, intense and colour-coded for snow.

As if it only existed in winter.

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Hi Ho, Hi Ho, It’s Off To Work We Go!

We now have fruiting apple trees, currant bushes and many climbers and flowers in a previously bleak corner of Leathermarket Gardens.

Our Leathermarket community planting puts in the ground reliable, sustainable bee-forage, planned and dug by volunteers. In the rain.

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Fritillary: Flower, Butterfly Or Dicebox?

The tongue-tickling name, fritillary, is derived from the Latin term for a dice-box - but all 3 are fritillaries.

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In The Apiary : Early May : Queen Cells

Some say that our Queen is so much in the public eye, that she is, in effect, a prisoner of her own subjects. Hold that thought.

The situation with a Queen Bee is remarkably similar. Constantly attended by her retinue, she lays worker bee or drone eggs in the cells selected by her adoring populace.

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