The 2012 Honey Harvest

 honey

Honey harvest takes all day. We start early, donning our white suits when the day is still cool, and finish cleaning up shortly before dinner.  Our annual tradition for three years now is to have biscuits for dinner, an excuse for eating honey just hours out of the hive, still warm and smelling of bees.

I appreciate what these amazing insects do for us–both in pollinating our vegetables and fruits, and supplying us with golden honey that lasts all year.  But every year I am reminded that I cannot reason with bees, and explain that while we take some of their honey we carefully leave enough to get them through the winter and spring, and that if they run out we will supply them with sugar to tide them over til the nectar flows start again.

So all they experience is the devastation of having a good chunk of their honey stolen, and it being traumatic enough an experience that some of them die.  I do celebrate and am thankful for honey and for bees, but don’t want to minimize the sacrifice required of them so that we, and all who eat Fern Creek honey, can enjoy the fruits of their labor.  I don’t mean to end on such a somber note–this is mostly a day of celebration for us–the joy of watching the honey pour out of the honey extractor after doing the work of gathering the supers from the hives, de-capping each super in preparation for extracting it from the comb, and spinning it out.

Thank God for bees!  And a sun-filled day in August we can devote to hanging out with them!

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