Re: Does anyone use phenology to time hive management events?
Being aware of weather patterns and forecasts, what is blooming, what is done blooming, what color pollen the bees are bringing in, how full the hive is with brood, bees and honey, etc. are all better indicators of what actions to take as a beekeeper than a date on a calender. For me, I am managing a small number of hives in a variety of locations, and I have a very bad memory, so I take notes after each visit to each location and review these notes when I get back home to decide on what action I will take next and when for each location. During the winter, I summarize these notes and compare to previous years notes. I rarely see patterns, but I do eventually see similarities in situations and what actions were successful and which were a waste of time or worse. I think you are on the right track with looking to natural phenomena for timing, however, I would concentrate on those phenomena that are directly related to the bees (forage, hive space, hive health, etc.) as much as possible.
life is finite while knowledge is infinite. - Zhuang Zi