Oxford Bees

Flowers in Bloom

Ivy Honey

Submitted by will on Sun, 09/09/2018 - 07:15

Ivy is a major late crop for bees. There is a lot available around Oxford and the bees love it.

The problem for bee keepers is that the Ivy honey sets very hard and doesn't taste nice. The taste is not much of a problem because the honey won't spin out in an extractor but the hard set makes it less useful in Winter for the bees.

Honey which sets releases water during crystallisation which can ferment inside the cell. Apparently the fermented liquid can give the bees Dysentry.

The bees have to work quite hard to clear out crystallised honey from cells. I frequently find sugar crystals on the hive floor which have been laboriously excavated by worker bees.

Ivy is flowering

Submitted by will on Thu, 06/09/2018 - 19:09

I smelled the first scent of Ivy flowering today. There was also appeared to be a bit more activity at the hive entrances. There is a lot of Ivy around Oxford.

Flowers in blossom in early June

Submitted by will on Sat, 02/06/2018 - 22:19

The trees have finished their blossom: Hawthorn and Horse Chestnut.

In their place there is abundant Buttercup and Elder in flower.

There are also very many varieties of hedgerow wild flowers (seen near Stanton Harcourt). I've seen daisies, climbing roses and different Umbilifers. I doubt whether many of these are within the forage area of either of my apiaries.