Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Collinsville, VA
    Posts
    469

    Default Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    I'm not sure what happened this year except the sourwood flow was a huge fail and my bees packed in something else. Whatever that something else was has now crystallized in the comb and I have 10 to 12 supers of it. I tried extracting and the frames just blow out. These are the supers that become drawn comb in the spring so I need to clean them out someway. Since I will need these in the spring I'd rather not put them back on the hive and hope the bees clean them out over winter.

    Any suggestions are appreciated.
    11 yrs. 25 Hives T Zone 7a

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    4,323

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    I don't see any other option but to let the bees clean them out.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
    Posts
    1,640

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    Try running a hose over them with slight pressure and shake them out. Messy, but I've done it before and gotten a lot out.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    4,141

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    I just wonder if you hurried up and put them on the bottom of your hive under the brood nest if the bees would not consider it a flow and reprocess the honey higher into the hive. Kill two birds with one stone. You might get lots of new good honey and the bees might make a bunch more fat winter bees. I don't know if this works but have been thinking it might. I have never tried it but it was sorta my plan to try it if I ever end up in your situation if I am still young and spry enough to still do all that lifting. I am too new to listen to though.
    Good luck
    gww
    zone 5b

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    arnold, missouri
    Posts
    19

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    put a super out & see if the bees will rob it out.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Collinsville, VA
    Posts
    469

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    Thanks for the responses. I sprayed a few frames today and put them out to dry. I also put some of the frames that "blew out" in the extractor outside for the bees to rob. They robbed honey but left the crystals and practically destroyed the comb that was left. I can't decide if I want to super below the brood nest or just put them on top of the hives and deal with whatever I have left in the spring. I'll probably experiment with a few of both.

    The upside - I won't be feeding sugar water this fall.
    11 yrs. 25 Hives T Zone 7a

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    134

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    how about heating the crystallized honey , comb and all (low heat of course). let it all melt and set in a bucket to cool. the next day the wax would have floated to the top and the honey would be liquid again.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Cullman, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,240

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    This may be the wacko idea from some one who should a kept quiet ...
    I was waiting to see if any one might suggest putting the honey supers in a van, trailer or vehicle for a bit.
    The thermometer in my a/c vent usually reads between 110 & 120F. When I leave work at the end of the day.What temp does beeswax melt?
    When I warm crystallized honey this way, it usually stays liquid till I finish the jar.
    Let the wax cool to a normal temp, then extract.
    Like I said at the beginning, this may be nutty.
    Please let us know what you do, and what the results are.
    Good luck, ce
    Started summer of 2013, just another new guy, tinkering with bees.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Essex, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: Crystallized honey in comb - what to do???

    If you can build a "hot box" that is thermostatically controlled you can liquefy the honey in the comb. A few days at approx 110f, with a fan blowing to circulate the heat and the honey will be liquid with the combs intact. I have done this before with honey that sat over winter and crystallized. Worked very well.

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