Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    international falls, Mn
    Posts
    197

    Default What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    I hope to start a couple of yards this year and I wondered what would be your ideal yard???
    I see some pics of yards right in the middle of woods- and some on the edges of fields....
    this past summer I worked in western North Dakota and there I saw 50-60 booming hives just
    flopped down in the middle of hay fields in 100 deg heat with rivers of bees comming out ,no
    shade at all....And how many hives per yard? is there a max? I'm hoping to start 4 to 6 per
    yard----SHHHH ---dont tell the bears...lol..

    ==McBee7==

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,346

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Space to put up a bear fence. Ability to get in and out at all hours with trucks and forklifts. Water source close by. Something blooming near by.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hamilton, Alabama
    Posts
    1,209

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    1. Shade in the middle of the day, sunshine in early morning.
    2. Water readily available
    3. Not in a low area, cold air settles in low places which can limit foragers from flying
    4. room to put up a fence if applicable
    5. Windbreak either from trees or from a slatted fence if necessary. (this is one of the most critical wintering requirements)
    6. Accessible by vehicle
    7. most critical - has lots of flowers to make a crop from
    8. second most critical - has early spring nectar available for buildup

    I have a few colonies in a location that fails on #8. I have to feed just a bit in early spring to stimulate them to raise enough brood for early buildup to make a crop from flowers that bloom in late April. It is a pita to have to do the feeding, but the location is otherwise excellent with good crops of honey each year. It is shaded by huge old oak trees from mid to late afternoon, there is a small river 100 yards away, it is on a low hill, fence is not needed, trees provide a wind break, there is a decent dirt road to drive right to the location, and I get a good crop of honey each year. I also happen to own the place which makes it worth the effort of spring stimulus feeding.
    DarJones - 44 years, 10 colonies (max 40), sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 11 frame broodnest, small cell

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Gainesboro, Tennessee, USA.
    Posts
    398

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    I look for a place as sheltered from chemical spray as possible first. then a place that is not to where a lot of folks can see it but I can get to it easy.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    3,876

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    All good advice for Alabama or hot country FP. In Minnesota you want full sun and hive facing that rising sun so the bees start early. Water nearby is good as they will need to haul it. Those hayfields were probably Alfalfa which puts out a lot of nectar. Being close to the nectar source is best. If you are wintering in same location, a windbreak is a really good thing. If that windbreak is a row of caragana a heavy bloomer, it is even better. Wild plums, Chokecherries, silverberry, fruit bloom all good for spring buildup as well as dandelions! You may even have buck brush there! Makin me homesick! Do you have linden/basswood? That is a good flow in places in Minnesota. Scout for your locations and good luck.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,331

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
    1. Shade in the middle of the day, sunshine in early morning.
    2. Water readily available
    3. Not in a low area, cold air settles in low places which can limit foragers from flying
    4. room to put up a fence if applicable
    5. Windbreak either from trees or from a slatted fence if necessary. (this is one of the most critical wintering requirements)
    6. Accessible by vehicle
    7. most critical - has lots of flowers to make a crop from
    8. second most critical - has early spring nectar available for buildup

    I have a few colonies in a location that fails on #8. I have to feed just a bit in early spring to stimulate them to raise enough brood for early buildup to make a crop from flowers that bloom in late April. It is a pita to have to do the feeding, but the location is otherwise excellent with good crops of honey each year. It is shaded by huge old oak trees from mid to late afternoon, there is a small river 100 yards away, it is on a low hill, fence is not needed, trees provide a wind break, there is a decent dirt road to drive right to the location, and I get a good crop of honey each year. I also happen to own the place which makes it worth the effort of spring stimulus feeding.
    Good points all. May I add, though, the importance of dealing with a property owner that you know something about and have some degree of trust in, either first hand or through a reference. Then COMMUNICATE with him or her. Tell them what to expect and not to expect, how often you will come and go. I even tell them not to get excited if you see headlights on the property in the dark and jokingly inform them that beekeepers are occassionally nocturnal when bees need moved.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Certainly trusting the property owner is important... I like yards that are close (not too far to drive) and that I can drive right up to the hives even if it rained today (hard to get beekeeping done when I can only get much done on a weekend and it rained last night and the hives are out in the middle of a field). Honey supers are heavy. Syrup is heavy. You don't want to be carrying things very far. Of course forage is important. Lack of pesticides is important as far as you can get it or at least a farmer who will keep you informed so you can deal with them.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Posts
    1,643

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Good advice from Mr. Lyon again. The first thing I look for is a place that is close to the blooming plant I'm trying to make honey from. Then I start looking for property close by. The attitude of the owner is one of the most important things I look at. I find that people with gardens and fruit trees seem to be pretty open minded about bees. Having access is the second most important thing to look at. It does no good to have a yard you have to make arrangements with the owner every time you need to go check on the hives. I have turned down yards where the owner wanted me to call them every time and they would meet me on the property to let me in. My schedule is way to busy to have time for that. I have met some very nice people so far. I have the gate code to one yard here locally, and I have a gate key to an Orange Grove out of town. The owners told me to come and go as needed.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    McClure, OH
    Posts
    1,017

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Definitely get to know the property owner and figure out who owns the neighboring properties or fields. A little neighborliness can save you a lot of grief later (and help you avoid bee casualties due to pesticide drift).

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,788

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Accessibility.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Madison, WI, USA
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Agree with all. Water is important and also make sure the neighbors do not have a swimming pool nearby. However, be careful that you don't basically pick the "same property in a different location". One of the advantages of having multiple yards is to have some variety of habitat, so that if one yard is not producing then perhaps another one will. There is a theoretical normal year for what plants will bloom when, but I have never seen one in practice.
    life is finite while knowledge is infinite. - Zhuang Zi

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    SNOW SHOE PA USA
    Posts
    1,222

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    I have mine out in the open on top a hill they get sun all day long and the bees love it . I had to build wind breaks but its isolated a its a bee paradise.
    I am in the north and heat has not been a problem I think the bees like the heat in these parts I even run black hives and never had a problem with heat.
    I have 25 hives on 12 acres but only use 7 for honey and 10 I'm selling in the spring as long as they make it.
    If I was you I'd go with full sun dry and isolated here have a look at mine.



    GOOD LUCK.
    Say hello to the bad guy!
    year five==== 31 hives==== T{OAV}

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Billerica, MA
    Posts
    298

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Like the yard and paint Glock.

    My most important point is access. A few years ago I took what yards I could get. Those yards are being phased out by yards I can drive right up to the hives at. I don't need to drive in all winter long, but getting there in March and through mud season is key.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Amador County, California, USA
    Posts
    138

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Accessibility, security, food sources.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    international falls, Mn
    Posts
    197

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    Very nice yards Glock!!
    I can see you put a lot of time and thought into your set up...
    Wondered if you have bears there?? You have a very tight yard--High wire fencing
    and electric on the outside of that.....

    I also wondered if anyone has ever had yards on state or federal property???
    In my area there's almost a million acres of federal property and a like amount of
    state (MN) acerage as well as papermill acerage....Its all very wild but there are
    nice medows with various mixes of wild flowers and trees...not much for fruit trees
    though...

    ==McBee7==

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX, USA
    Posts
    1,766

    Default Re: What do you look for in a new bee yard?

    I've got an eye on northwest Arkansas, want to find someone local there to check out a beeyard for me before I get too involved. Don't know if there are bears either.
    Time to be a gypsy again, 2014 will be my prep year, my bees want a better area with actual rainfall.

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