Apr. 17th, 2016

My bees arrived this past week, and I spent some time getting them established in the hive. Right now, they are in a brood box (a place for the queen to lay eggs) with a feeder (filled with sugar water) stacked on top. The bees will spend the first few weeks making comb for the new eggs. Only after that part is established will they be able to turn their efforts toward making honey. The good thing is, my bottlebrush tree is in full bloom right now, so the bees have plenty of flowers to forage right here in the yard.

I spent the weekend getting the garden switched from spring to summer. I harvested the last of the loquats and all of the spring potatoes. Then I cleared out the raised beds and planted my summer crops. This year I'll be growing four types of tomatoes, three types of squash, flour corn, summer potatoes, and of course lots of beans (27 different selections).

Now comes the loooong wait until everything starts producing. The whole garden is covered with cages and bamboo stakes and fencing. I'm hoping that will be enough to keep the dogs from digging in the raised beds.

My blueberries are starting to ripen, so I'll have to put new netting over those, and the cherries should be turning red in a couple weeks. Last year, I lost a lot of my cherry crop because of a type of fruit fly; when the fly lays eggs in the ripe cherries, it punches little holes in the skin, and so not only do the fruit end up with fly larvae in them, they start to rot due to the holes. This year I'm going to try covering the tree with insect netting to keep the fruit flies out. Hopefully that will do the trick.

I have a lot of pruning to do--the grape vines and wisteria in particular need to be cut back--but I'll have to work on that project next weekend.

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spacealien_vamp

December 2016

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