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Thread: Washington

  1. #281
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    In the past week, black locust flowers faded, tulip poplars came to full bloom, and blackberries began to bloom seriously. The bees made good progress in honey supers.

    •Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •6/3 - 6/9/19

    [Honey bees on bellflower (usually blue), common poppy, bachelor’s button (usually blue), Japanese euonymus, and blue spruce sedum]

    bellflower.jpgPoppy.jpgbachelorsbuttonpink.jpgEuonymus2.jpgSedumbluespruce.jpg
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

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  3. #282
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    (Continued from post#281)

    •Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •6/3 - 6/9/19

    •New blooms

    •Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium): an upright wildflower 2’-5’ tall, with lance shaped leaves and long stalks carrying many 4-petaled flowers, pink or red-purple. I heard monofloral fireweed honey can be harvested in mountains/foothills and tastes very good.
    [Fireweed & honey bee] https://mudsongs.org/honey-bee-frien...ower-fireweed/

    •Japanese stewartia (Stewartia pseudocamellia): an ornamental shrub or a small tree with white, camellia-like flowers.
    [Stewartia & honey bee] https://www.shadetreefarm.com/2013/0...ese-stewartia/

    •Ocean spray (Holodiscus discolor): a native deciduous shrub 4’ - 5’ tall, with lobed leaves and cascading clusters of tiny, white, 5-petal flowers.
    [Ocean spray & honey bee, June 2018]
    Oceanspray.jpg

    •Staghorn sumac (Rhus typhina); a common ornamental shrub or a small tree, with pinnately compound leaves, hairy stems, and erect clusters of tiny, greenish flowers. Female plants later produce reddish, pyramidal fruiting clusters. Quite a few escapes are found in my neighborhood. Similar-looking smooth sumac (R. glabra) with hairless stems may be native in some areas.
    [Staghorn sumac & honey bee, June 2018]
    Sumac.jpg

    •Washington hawthorn (Crataegus phaenopyrum): a small ornamental tree with lobed leaves and clusters of small, white, 5-petaled flowers. This is the last hawthorn to bloom in my neighborhood.
    [Washington hawthorn & honey bee, June 2018]
    washingtonawthorn.jpg

    •Other honey bee-friendly plants: blanket flower (Gaillardia), chicory (Cichorium intybus), lanceleaf coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata), persimmon (Diospyros kaki), yellow pond lily (Nuphar lutea), and etc.
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  4. #283
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    The bees collected a good amount of nectar and pollen during long daylight hours, dry and warm throughout the past week. One colony mostly brought back gray-colored blackberry pollen while another preferred cream-colored tulip poplar.

    •Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •6/10 - 6/16/19

    •New blooms

    •Borage (Borago officinalis): an easy-to-grow annual plant, 2’ - 3’ tall, with drooping, star-shaped, bright blue, 5-petal flowers and hairy leaves.
    [Borage & honey bee, September 2018]
    Borage.jpg

    •Box-leaved holly or Japanese holly (Ilex crenata): an evergreen hedge plant, looking like a boxwood, with small, shiny, alternate leaves and tiny, white, 4-lobed flowers.
    [Box-leaved holly & honey bee, June 2019]
    boxleafholly.jpg

    •Douglas' spirea, hardhack, or rose spirea (Spiraea douglasii): a native deciduous shrub, 2’ - 6’ tall, with alternate leaves and erect, pointed clusters of numerous rosy-pink flowers.
    [Douglas’ spirea & honey bee, July 2018]
    hardhack.jpg

    •Evergreen magnolia or southern magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora): a small to medium sized ornamental tree with glossy green leaves and large, white flowers. It was one of my bees’ most favorite mid-summer pollen sources last year.
    [Evergreen magnolia & honey bee, July 2018]
    Southernmagnolia.jpgSouthernmagnolia2.jpg
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  5. #284
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    [continued from post #283]

    •Late, milkflower or parney cotoneaster (Cotoneaster lacteus): a large ornamental shrub, 6’ - 12’ tall, with alternate leaves and clusters of small, white, 5-petal flowers that later become showy red berries. This is the last cotoneaster to bloom in my neighborhood, and also the most popular with honey bees.
    [Late cotoneaster & honey bee, June 2018]
    lateCotoneaster.jpg

    •St John's-wort (Hypericum): creeping St. John's wort (aka Aaron's beard, H. calycinum) is a common groundcover plant, ~1’ tall, with oppositely arranged leaves and yellow flowers 2 - 3” in diameter, which have five petals and many long stamens. Common St. John's wort (H. perforatum), often found roadsides, is taller (2-3’), and has smaller (1”) flowers.
    [Creeping St. John's wort & honey bee, June 2018, common St. John’s wort & honey bee, August 2018]
    StJohn'swortcreeping.jpgStjohn'swortcommon.jpg

    •Tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissima): an invasive tree which can grow to 60’-80’ tall, with pinnately compound leaves and erect clusters of small, greenish flowers. Smaller trees may look like sumacs.
    [Tree of heaven & honey bee, June 2018]
    treeofheaven.jpg

    •Waxleaf privet (probably L. japonicum); an ornamental shrub with oval (2”-4” long), glossy green, oppositely arranged leaves, and conical clusters of small, white, 4-petal, stinking flowers. I think honey bees like it better than small-leaf privet (probably common privet, L. vulgare) which started earlier.
    [Waxleaf privet & honey bee, June 2018]
    waxleafprivet.jpg

    •Other honey bee-friendly plants:
    cosmos (Cosmos bipinnatus), elegant clarkia (Clarkia unguiculata), glossy abelia (Abelia × grandiflora), Himalayan honeysuckle (Leycesteria formosa), hollyhock (Alcea), lamb’s ear (Stachys byzantina), mouse garlic (Allium angulosum), oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia), Pacific water parsley (Oenanthe sarmentosa), and etc.
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  6. #285
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    We had a week of relatively cool temperatures and much needed showers, so foraging activities seemed somewhat slow, but I saw good progress in capping honey. Tulip poplars faded by the weekend. Blackberries passed their peaks in sunny locations but those on shady creekbanks just started, some of which may persist until mid-late August.

    •Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •6/17 - 6/23/19

    [Honey bees on Japanese meadowsweet, escallonia, creeping St. John’s wort, and privet]
    Japanese meadowsweet.jpgEscallonia.jpgStJohn'swortcreeping2.jpgPrivet.jpg

    •New blooms

    •American chestnut (Castanea dentata): a medium to large sized tree with long serrated leaves and slender male catkins. It is not native here but sometimes planted in large yards.
    [Chestnut & honey bee, July 2018]
    Chestnut.jpg
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  7. #286
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    •New blooms (continued from post #285)

    •Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense): a perennial weed, 3’ -5’ tall, with pink flowerheads and alternate leaves that are lobed and spiny (regional variations exist).
    [Thistle & honey bee, July 2018]
    canadahistle.jpg

    •Little-leaf linden (Tilia cordata): a fairly common street tree, with heart-shaped leaves and fragrant, yellow-green flowers in hanging clusters. Similar-looking American linden (aka basswood, T. americana, not native here) may not bloom every year.
    [Linden & honey bee, July 2018]
    Linden.jpg

    •Russian sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia): a perennial plant 2’-4’ tall, with finely-dissected, gray-green leaves and numerous light blue flowers on branched flower stems.
    [Russian sage & honey bee, July 2018]
    Russiansage.jpg

    •Scotch heather (Calluna vulgaris) and Cornish heath (Erica vagans): they look alike but the former has flat, scale-like leaves and the latter has needle-like leaves.
    [Heather & honey bee, August 2018]
    ScotchHeather1.jpg
    [Heath & honey bee, July 2018]
    Cornishheath.jpg

    •Other honey bee-friendly plants:
    beeblossoms (Gaura), Chinese forget-me-not (Cynoglossum amabile), evening primrose (Oenothera biennis), false spirea (Sorbaria sorbifolia), garden nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus), musk mallow (Malva moschata), red dragon knotweed (Persicaria microcephala ‘red dragon’), silver lace vine (Fallopia baldschuanica), summer squash (Cucurbita pepo), and etc.
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  8. #287
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    The bees collected lots of nectar and pollen during the past week. About 90% pollen came from the blackberry, and the rest included chestnut, tulip poplar, evergreen magnolia, privet, dandelion/cat’s ear, thistle, linden, and several unknowns. We did 2 nd honey extraction of the season, probably a mixture of blackberry, tulip poplar, black locust and some leftover maple/hawthorn honey.

    •Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •6/24 - 6/30/19

    [Honey bees on clarkia, escallonia, orange stonecrop, white stonecrop, and spike speedwell]

    Clarkia.jpgEscalloniapinkprincess.jpgSedumH.jpgSedumalbum.jpgSpeedwell.jpg
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  9. #288
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    (continued from post #287)

    •New blooms (6/24 - 6/30/19)

    •Himalayan balsam or policeman’s helmet (Impatiens glandulifera); a large annual weed, 3’ - 6’ tall, with hollow stems, serrated leaves, and pink, helmet-shaped flowers.
    [Himalayan balsam & honey bee, August 2018]
    Himalayanbalsam.jpg

    •Jewelweed or spotted touch-me-not (Impatiens capensis): an annual wildflower 3’ - 5’ tall, often found on stream banks. It is similar but smaller than Himalayan balsam (see above) and the flowers are orange-yellow. My bees often brought back its pollen last September.
    [Jewelweed & honey bee, September 2018]
    Jewelweed.jpg

    •Lady's thumb smartweed (Persicaria maculosa aka Polygonum persicaria): a common weed 1’ - 2’ tall, with stalks of tiny white-pink flowers densely packed.
    [Smartweed & honey bee, August 2018]
    smartweed.jpg

    •Old man's beard or traveler’s joy (Clematis vitalba): a climbing vine often found on roadsides, with loose clusters of greenish white flowers that have 4-6 sepals (look like petals).
    [Old man’s beard & honey bee, August 2018]
    Clematis.jpg

    •Orange coneflower (Rudbeckia fulgida): native to eastern North America, it is a common garden perennial with daisy-like flowers with yellow rays and brownish-purple center disks. A similar-looking annual plant, black eyed susan (R. hirta) will bloom later.
    [Orange coneflower & honey bee, August 2018]
    orangeconeflower.jpg

    •Sourwood (Oxydendrum arboreum): a small to medium sized ornamental tree, with long, alternate, dark-green leaves and lots of small, white, urn-shaped flowers on drooping, one-sided flower stems. I heard that monofloral sourwood honey can be harvested where it is native (a part of Eastern US), and tastes very good.
    [Sourwood & honey bee] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwYGWv73ylw

    •Other honey bee-friendly plants:
    balloon flower (Platycodon grandiflorus), dill (Anethum graveolens), blue globe echinops (Echinops bannaticus), field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis), hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis), Japanese anemone (Anemone hupehensis), marjoram (Origanum majorana), oregano (Origanum vulgare), single-flowered dahlia (Dahlia), and etc.
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  10. #289
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    The blackberry flow tapered off but it was a good one, I think. See below for a summary of June nectar flow. Japanese knotweed began to bloom in very sunny locations, where it was not cut earlier.

    
•Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •7/1 - 7/7/19

    •New blooms

    •Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica aka Polygonum cuspidatum]: one of our major summer nectar sources. It is an extremely invasive perennial plant, up to 12’ tall, with reddish, hollow stems with nodes, large oval leaves, and erect clusters of small, creamy-white flowers. It has a long blooming period and usually peaks in August.
    [Japanese knotweed & honey bee, August 2018]
    Knotweed.jpg

    •Panicled hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata): a medium to large sized ornamental shrub with oval, dark green leaves and upright, conical clusters (to 6-8” long) of white sterile flowers and non-showy fertile flowers. It was one of my bee’s favorite pollen sources last July.
    
[Panicled hydrangea & honey bee, July 2018]
    hydrangea.jpg

    •Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea): native to eastern North America, it is a common garden perennial, 2-4' tall, with showy, daisy-like flowers with pink-purple rays.
    [Purple coneflower & honey bee, July 2018]
    Purpleconeflower.jpg

    •Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria): a perennial plant 6-10’ tall, grown in gardens or found (escaped) in moist places. It has showy spikes of numerous, reddish-purple, 5-7 petal flowers and lance-shaped leaves.
    [Loosestrife & honey bee, July 2018]
    Loosestrife.jpg

    •Other honey bee-friendly plants:
    germander (Teucrium chamaedrys), golden rain tree (Koelreuteria paniculata), purple beautyberry (Callicarpa dichotoma), purpletop vervain (Verbena bonariensis), red bistort (Persicaria amplexicaulis), sunflower (Helianthus annuus), tansy ragwort (Senecio jacobaea)

    •June 2019 nectar flow recap
    Apparent peak blooms came around 5/28 (black locust), 6/8 (tulip poplar), 6/15 (blackberry in sun), 6/25 (blackberry in shade or mown earlier), and 7/1 (linden). My stronger hive had a Broodminder hive scale. Its most productive 3-day period was 6/11 - 13 (gained average 5.5 lb/day), and the 7-day period was 6/26 - 7/2 (gained average 3.4 lb/day). From this hive, 23 lb honey was extracted on 5/27 (maple/hawthorn) and ~25 lb on 6/30. Will do at least one more extraction later. My hives are in a half-shade location. Within two miles are woodlands, wetlands and residential areas.
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

  11. #290
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Lake Forest Park, WA
    Posts
    536

    Default Re: Washington

    Honey bees worked on various flowers, including ones they would ignore during major flows. Roadside weeds are still plentiful, thanks to regular rainfall. I heard that it will be one of the wettest Julys in decades.

    •Lake Forest Park, WA 98155
    •7/8 - 7/14/19

    [Honey bees on snowberry, birdsfoot trefoil, asparagus, butterfly bush (uncommon), and English plantain (uncommon)]
    Snowberry2.jpgBirdsfoot trefoil2.jpgAsparagus.jpgButerflybush1.jpgPlantain1.jpg

    •New blooms

    •Catalpa (Catalpa): a medium-sized ornamental tree, with showy clusters of white, orchid-like flowers. I could not tell which one of the two species (Northern and Southern, native to relatively small areas of midwestern and southeastern US).
    [Catalpa & honey bee] http://peacebeefarm.blogspot.com/2011/05/nectaries.html

    •Other honey bee-friendly plants:
    black eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta), hardy plumbago or blue-flowered leadwort (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides), lily of the Nile (Agapanthus africanus), ramp or wild leek (Allium tricoccum)
    Zone 8, elevation 70 ft, near the north end of Lake Washington

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