Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    I'm a beginner beekeeper and have my one hive so far on a farm where we also keep two donkeys. Last season it seemed that all of August was pretty much a dearth as far as the bees were concerned and since we have a nice unused field I was considering growing something to get them a bit of a flow that time of year. Since we also keep the donkeys I was wondering if I could use some kind of crop that would provide a good flow for the bees in August and then dry up and be a decent feed or at least something to make the "beds" for the donkeys.

    Any ideas for a crop that fits my requirements:

    - Blooms at the end of summer when the bees are in a dearth
    - Ideally doesn't need much water but I have plenty of water to irrigate in August if needed
    - Come fall, dries up and can be consumed by donkeys

    Cheers,

    Pedro

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Walker, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    953

    Default Re: Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    My first thought was clover, but I have no idea when clover blooms in Portugal, so the timing may be wrong for what you need.

    Rusty
    Rusty Hills Farm -- home of AQHA A Rusty Zipper & Rusty's Bees ( LC and T)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fair Grove,MO,USA
    Posts
    1,666

    Default Re: Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    If you have a garden and like radishes put out enough to eat and let the rest go to seed, bees love there blooms.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,774

    Default Re: Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    I have horses and bees and I planted:
    a horse pasture grass mixture that has:
    Bluegrass
    Timothy
    A cool season grass (don't remember the name but it wasn't Brome)
    Alfalfa

    Then I planted:
    yellow sweet clover
    white sweet clover
    white dutch clover
    birdsfoot trefoil
    chickory

    In addition I planted some wildflowers:
    goldenrod
    joe pye weed
    ironweed
    asters

    I also collect danelion seed from yards that let it go to seed and plant that every chance I get.

    The chickory tends to be late and blooms for a long time even in a drought.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Re: Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    Thanks for all the ideas. I'll have to go through them and figure out what is feasible for our weather and particularly what is feasible for the donkeys.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    I have horses and bees and I planted:
    a horse pasture grass mixture that has:
    Bluegrass
    Timothy
    A cool season grass (don't remember the name but it wasn't Brome)
    Alfalfa

    Then I planted:
    yellow sweet clover
    white sweet clover
    white dutch clover
    birdsfoot trefoil
    chickory

    In addition I planted some wildflowers:
    goldenrod
    joe pye weed
    ironweed
    asters

    I also collect danelion seed from yards that let it go to seed and plant that every chance I get.

    The chickory tends to be late and blooms for a long time even in a drought.
    Michael, do you happen to know if any of these are particularly rich in calories/protein? Donkies are desert animals and can only handle poorer feeds compared to horses. I'd like to be able to leave the donkeys out to pasture as much as possible, so ideally I'd like to have things that actually dry up after flowering. In a grass pasture I have to give them dry feed in the morning and only then set them loose on the pasture for a limited time, and I have to be careful in the spring because all the grasses have grown very fast and are highly caloric. I assume you don't have that issue with the horses.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Loganville, GA
    Posts
    2,172

    Default Re: Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    Don't know a thing about donkeys but I do know that everybody in GA that has pasture for anything has at least one donkey for the coyotes. I'm sure few of them have the elaborate array of plants that Michael has but they are heavy in grasses and dutch clover and some sweet clover. Their donkeys are always in the pastures.
    "Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." Winston Churchill

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,774

    Default Re: Ideas for a crop with double use (bees and donkeys)

    >Michael, do you happen to know if any of these are particularly rich in calories/protein? Donkies are desert animals and can only handle poorer feeds compared to horses.

    Pretty much all the legumes as well as the chicory... maybe you should stick with just the chicory if you're concerned about too much protein and you want a late bloomer than can handle drought...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads