Monday, 28 September 2009

Hive 6 is deserted. There's dead brood, two dead queen cells, and no bees live or dead. I can only assume they all went back to Hive 5 next door. The honey has been completely robbed out. This never happens in hives with my standard reduced entrance, but I didn't have one spare, so this one ended up with a wide-open entrance. I noticed bees going in and out, not wasps, so the honey is presumably in the other hives.

I'm digging over a patch I dug earlier in the season. It had a big patch of bindweed, and there's still some left. I may not have done very well growing veg this year, but at least there's a lot more ground free from perennial weeds, which isn't going to need any more routine digging.

Some of us spent Saturday learning to identify apples. We've got around 70 old apple trees on the site. Many have been idnetified already, but there are more to do. While most are common varieties, there are some rarities as well. As far as we know, it's a unique feature of the site, and we want to maintain it, by replacing trees as they die off. I know, for instance, that there were once three apple trees on my plot. All I found was a few rotting logs, and many others have gone the same way. I've planted trees to replace them, and we've now planted a communal apple orchard at the end of the site, on a plot that was completely derelict.

Last year we had a day to learn how to prune them. Some of us are now planning to get some apple books, and try to identify as many of the remaining trees as we can.

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