2010 was my first year as a beekeeper. Following a series of beekeeping classes, I was excited to get started. I was very fortunate to have help and mentoring from a couple of experienced beekeepers as well as an interested and strong neighbor (supers full of honey can be very heavy!) It has been a very exciting and interesting year. I picked a protected spot for their hive that gets morning sun to warm them up quickly. The bees really seem to like their new home.

Although one doesn’t usually get honey the first year, I did harvest 18 pounds of delicious honey, leaving them plenty of honey for them! Next year, I am told, I may get as much as 100 pounds, if the bees make it through the winter and the season is good. What fun this has been!*Update: Bees didn’t make it through the winter as many, many didn’t in my area. Just installed a new colony today. Hoping for the best!

Well, the new bees are working very hard and doing extremely well! I have harvested about 25 pounds today of beautiful, light, perfect honey! How exciting! It must have been the clover and black locust! *Update: These bees did not make it through the winter. Will keep trying.

Update Spring 2013: New Bees didn't make it through the winter. It's discouraging. I have heard that many other beekeepers have lost their colonies this winter, as well. It makes me wonder just what we are doing to our environment that won't support such crucial components to our own sustenance.

Stone Cottage Farm & Garden 2013