Though the dog may be lazy, the bees stay quite busy and produce a high quality honey from the nectars of the Bluegrass Region of Central Kentucky.
Hoping not to jinx Mother Nature, the 2012-2013 winter In Central Kentucky and Southern Indiana has been moderate. We've had a few cold spells, sometimes as low as 10 -12 degrees F, but not for sustained periods. The fall and early December periods were mild - and perhaps caused the bees to consume more honey stores - as they were a bit more active. We've fed protein anad honey patties intermittantly and most of the hives seem to be fairing well. If Punxatawney Phil is correct that spring is near, it would appear that we will have a chance for another fine and, hopefully, long spring. If that is the case, we can expect large harvests of light spring honey dominated by Black Locusy, blackberries and a broad range f flowering trees and spring flowers.
The bees forage from a dozen or more bee yards dispersed throughout Central Kentucky surrounding the state Capital, Frankfort. The location of each bee yard relative to woodland, cropland, open meadows, the Kentucky River and its bottom lands as well as rural settlements produce a wide array of very local honey.
Each of the bee yards are harvested and processed separately, retaining the distinctive flavor and aroma profiles of the individual yard, its geography, microclimate and other factors. Though we can’t claim the honey is organic, we add neither chemicals nor antibiotics to the hives. We feed the bees in the spring and fall but insure that the honey supers are removed during those times. This practice insures that only natural honey reaches the comb we harvest from the spring, summer and early fall honey flows. As a family owned operation, we let the bees do the work and beyond mechanically filtering the harvest, the product is theirs: raw, pure and local.
I have always thought of myself as a bee tender - not a beekeeper. As nature would have it, the bees are independent and will not be "kept" should they choose otherwise. As such, we do best by selecting bee yard sites that are favorable for the hive colonies to flourish; have access to nectar and pollen producing trees and flowers; are proximate to fresh water, and are sheltered from the brisk winds of winter and summer storms. We attempt to protect the hives from four legged marauders and must resign ourselves to the vagaries of weather cycles, whether it be heat or cold, draught or rain and snow.
The next several pages will provide more detail on our beeyards and the honey that is currently available from the Lazy Dog.