Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Record Honey Harvest

The Harvest
Cole the Birthday Boy Goes First

Aunt Marleta Takes a Turn

"Am I next?" (Griff to Dan)

John does a "superb" job decapping

"Unca Bump" asks the kids what they know about bees and honey?

Hal gathering honey boxes

Allie, Hal & Dan manning the fume boards

Harry O IV and Tyler gathering honey boxes

Before the Big Event!

The honey party gained ground this year with 23 family members and one guest here this year for the big event. We could have wished for cooler temps - the garage got up above 100, and you can't open doors or windows or the bees will come in after the honey you took from them. It was a great time with Harry IV doing his impromptu "bee class" for the youngsters. Uncle John jumped in and became the lead "decapper" - meaning he scraped the layer of wax off the honeycomb cells. George manned the line of "spinners" who cranked the extractor. Pat became the jar filler. Marleta gave us a little piano entertainment to inspire the young pianists in the group to keep up with their lessons and "practice". Some of the kids hung in to the very end with the adults and the honey processing in the garage that took about 5 hours total.

And, yes, it was a successful harvest. Our first year we had 2 hives and got about 5 gallons of honey. Last year we again had 2 hives and got only about 2 gallons. One hive died out shortly after that harvest. This year we had 4 hives and got nearly 14 gallons (168 pounds)! As Harry says, "Incredible."