Being that it is getting to be about the time of year--already--that package orders need to be put in because of huge demand I was thinking something that should get more posts--namely getting off the package treadmill. What I mean buy that is the tread many have of just buying packages every year to cover losses. This is really alot more important than many folks around here are obsessed with the treatment treadmill
If more time was spent concerned with propagation at least through splits, many new and intermediate beekeepers would have more stock to play with treatment free, top bar hives etc, but instead people waste too much time and energy only on treatment methods and alternative beekeeping first. Making more hives should really be a beekeeping basic its not that advanced or mysterious but many feel that way because they never try it. Part of any good treatment method is being able to recover from a failed method or experiement. That and packages are starting to get really expensive! Of course if you are completely wiped out or brand new to beekeeping this may be necessary but otherwise it is very important that every beekeeper knows how to make increase of their hives.
Just my two cents