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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    El Cerrito, California, USA
    Posts
    72

    Default When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    This question might seem obvious to most, but not me. I am from Michigan and have lived in California for more than 20 years. I still have not adjusted to the weather patterns out here. Today in my California backyard it was over 70 degrees and the bees were flying a lot.
    I was planning on regressing the bees in "the spring", but not sure when that is. LOL.

    A couple years ago we had a warm spell and our plum tree blossomed. One week later we had freezing rain that knocked all the flowers off the tree. No plums that year.

    I am afraid to do anything with the bees too soon.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    5,038

    Default Re: When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    We are not having a winter this year, yet. If you have very strong hives within range of eucalyptus bloom, spring starts about Halloween. I checked five hives yesterday. Three were worthless tiny clusters and two had filled most of a medium super ready to extract. The first swarms are normally beginning of March, peaking in April.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    2,477

    Default Re: When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    I think we're headed towards an early swarm season due to no winter here. Also, very little brood break so mites will be plentiful early on. I just took off a total of four supers from 6 hives with plenty to spare.
    Last edited by Charlie B; 01-05-2014 at 04:27 PM.
    President, San Francisco Beekeepers Association
    www.habitatforhoneybees.org

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Yuba City, Ca
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    Ca is huge. I only know about the areas where my bees will or may sit. Up here, I'd call spring start when the wild mustard seed is blooming. That should be in early to mid Feb, but who knows this year with no rain. depending where you are will get you swings in flow. But it's done for me with the end of star thistle in August.

    If you have strong bees and are feeding sub now, they can swarm as early as almonds in Feb. I'll see balls-O-bees in trees then. Like Frank said, usually in March and April. I lost a swarm last year in May and one in June. These were both my fault.
    Zone 9b. Second year newb.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,034

    Default Re: When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    I had at least two frames of capped brood last week in a medium sized hive.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,191

    Default Re: When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    They are building up a little right now, Once the nut, ornamental, & fruit trees start to bloom mid Feb on, they will go like crazy.
    Dan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    El Cerrito, California, USA
    Posts
    72

    Default Re: When does spring build-up start in northern California?

    Thanks everyone for replying.
    The ornamental & fruit trees in my neighbors back yard are just starting to bloom . I guess spring is starting now (at least in my backyard).

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