Monday, September 10, 2012

Garden Update


Things have been quiet at our house, lately. We've been doing a bit of cycling, in preparation for our BORP fundraising ride, working on small projects, and generally enjoying the garden.

I continue to stalk the green bees in our back yard.

They are frustratingly flighty, never staying still for more than an instant.

We're harvesting lots of kale, trading lemons across the fence with one set of neighbors (we have Meyers, they probably have Lisbon or Eurekas), and scooping up windfall apples from the other neighbors' apple tree. We eat them pan fried with butter and cinnamon, the chickens enjoy the wormier bits.

Our Scarlet Runner beans seem to be winding down. I'm not seeing many more flowers. The garden continues to be a mystery. All the lettuce I planted this year bolted before it was even two inches tall. We fail at lettuce, but can grow kale like nobody's business. Beans do well, if the snails don't mow them down. We've also got some volunteer tomatoes chugging along. I didn't plant them, because of my nightshade allergies, but I decided to let them grow, because they were doing so very well. I wonder if they'll actually ripen?

I've been struggling with really low energy, of late. One manifestation of this is a sorry lack of attention to our beehives. On Saturday, I finally inspected the Magnolia hive, and created some serious chaos in our backyard in the process. Procrastination does tend to lead to chaos. You'd think I'd have learned this by now.

The bees had done a pretty dandy job of building wax and propolis "bridges" between all of their comb, so pulling things apart resulted in a fair amount of damage to the internal structure of the hive. No kidding. The propolis was stronger than the glue and nails holding the wooden frames together. I had a devil of a job, untangling that mess.

I got the hive tidied up, did our usual crush-and-strain method of harvest (sticky but low tech) and in the end we harvested almost twelve pounds of honey from that one colony. We'll rinse wax, and use that liquid to make a batch of mead.

Overall, I would say that this was a good week in the garden. If you're curious to see what other gardeners around the globe are up to, swing on over to Daphne's blog.


K said...

Yay! Another post from my favorite blog.

I love your photos, rays of sunshine!

I'm sorry to hear about the low energy. It's something I've struggled with for some time now.

Just wanted to say thanks for the update, I love reading your posts and look forward to them.

Susan Zentmyer said...

Wow - great bee shots!!

Michelle said...

What a beautiful sunflower, fantastic photo. I finally caught a glimpse of a green bee when I was out hiking, and you are right, those babies don't stay still for long. They still haven't visited my garden.

I've been struggling to get going in the mornings, I just want to lay in bed. Once I get going though I'm ok. I chalked it up to the shorter days.

Mary Hysong said...

I think your 'green bees' might be some variety of hover fly.

Lovely to have your own honey. I used to keep bees and had to quit because I developed an allergy to the stings.

Barbara Good said...

Love the photos, I'm very impressed with your honey harvest. Hope the energy levels lift soon.


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