Golden rod ?
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Thread: Golden rod ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    Newtown, CT, USA
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    223

    Default Golden rod ?

    Hi Everyone, I am in CT and don't see any signs of much talked about golden rod flow! bumble bees and all kind of pollinators I had never seen before are on them but not the honey bees, can anyone explain this Any one experiencing Golden Rod flow in the northeast?
    Thanks

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
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    4,084

    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Deeptser
    I am new. I have never saw my bees on the small golden rod but last year I was collecting seed heads from my brothers field of showy golden rod and the bees were all over it. I noticed something simular with a bunch of cosmos that I planted also. I think one of two things is going on. One, there still might be something out there that the bees like better and two, the plant might have to go through a cycle and only near when they are ready to start end of life producing seed do they really give off what they are going to give to the bees. Maby looks alone is not enough and being yellow may not be late enough in the plant life cycle yet. I just know that at some point the plant can be loaded with foragers, cause I have seen it.

    I could not know any of what I just typed. I just watch and try and learn.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  4. #3
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    Jun 2013
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    Rensselaer County, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    I am northeast of Albany, NY. I've had goldenrod nectar and pollen coming in for a couple of weeks. Different kinds of goldenrod give more or less nectar. And I think that it takes a warmer day for it to really flow, so these cool early mornings mean it is slow to start. Keep in mind, too, that "goldenrod" is more than one species, and they bloom in a long series from early August through about the third week of September. Yours will start and end a bit later in southern/central CT.

    You can smell the different odors from the different species as they are being cured, even from outside of the hive on warm evenings.

    IIRC correctly you had a severe drought last summer and since goldenrod is perennial, that may have curtailed its growth a bit this year. We didn't have drought here last summer and have had a lot of rain this summer so goldenrod here is lush and tall. I am not sure how the upcoming week of below normal temps will affect it - I am hoping it will prolong the flow.

    You will also see golden tinting on surfaces inside the hive from pollen clinging to the foragers.

    I am making an active effort to learn to tell the different species of goldenrod this year. So far, I have identified seven here on my farm, but there are 30 +/- in NY. Telling them apart is the first step in trying to figure out overall how nutritious (as opposed to simple productivity) goldenrod flow actually is for wintering bees. They are reputed to not be as healthy for bees as early honey; the honey has a higher ash content, and the pollen has a poorer protein and amino acid profile. Since they are almost entirely New World plants this makes sense.

    Nancy

  5. #4
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    Apr 2015
    Location
    West Bloomfield, MI, USA
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    105

    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    The golden rod is just now starting to bloom here in SE Michigan. We haven't had much rain here lately, so that might be the reason for the delay. At any rate, I still haven't noted any curing odors emanating from my hives.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    St. Albans, Vermont
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    8,173

    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    GR in full bloom here. I smelled it a little this morning. Not much of a flow this year. 68-72 for highs doesn't make a flow.

  7. #6
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    Apr 2016
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    Newtown, CT, USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    So the flow is temperature dependent? what would the ideal temp be?

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    I would guess high 70s - low 80s, but OTOH if it's really hot the blooms go by in just a day or so, decreasing the amount of nectar that can be collected. Fortunately, as I said, it is not just one plant, so there are successive waves as the different species start up and mature, followed by the next one.

    It may all look like bright yellow flowers, but if you look closely the leaves, and arrangements of the clusters of the flowers are quite different from species to species. I'm giving each kind a good sniff to try to fix their distinct smells so I can try to correlate that with what odors I get from the hives.

    Here's a link you may find useful: http://www.discoverlife.org/mp/20q?guide=Solidago It lists 23 goldenrods in CT, with pictures and differentiating info. Have fun!

    Nancy

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Quote Originally Posted by deepster View Post
    So the flow is temperature dependent? what would the ideal temp be?
    80s and humid.

  10. #9
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    Jun 2015
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    Randolph, New York
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    80s and humid.
    Goldenrod bloom entering peak in another week or so here in Western New York. Bees hitting it hard as well as the Japanese knotweed which is peaking soon. Was out taking pics yesterday with my macro lens. Definite curing going on in my hives. Promises to be an excellent flow which we often get here in late summer.

  11. #10
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    Dec 2015
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    Sawyer County,WI USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Goldenrod is peaking right now in Northwest Wisconsin. We need some heat!!!

    Bees gather nectar/pollen from different plants at different/optimal times of day, and unless we are there to see it, we can often miss their gathering/foraging activity, or assume they are not taking it, when in fact, they just left or will be coming by later.

  12. #11
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    Apr 2016
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    Newtown, CT, USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Well we are in the 50s this week. I guess nothing will be happening for a while!!!
    I think this GR flow is too much of a touch and go, last year didn't happen because of drought this year is too cold....

  13. #12
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    Aug 2015
    Location
    Richmond Illinois USA
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    109

    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    The goldenrod in the field next to us is just starting to pop. I'm looking forward to seeing what the bees do with it.

    OTOH, we have a large patch of garlic chives at one end of the garden which is in full bloom, and covered with bees. Made me wonder what garlic honey would be like (in my mind I see a shelf in the store, with clover honey, orange blossom honey, garlic honey...). But mostly they seem to be gathering pollen.

    Cheers,

  14. #13
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    Apr 2016
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    Murfreesboro, TN (Rutherford Co)
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Blooming here in Middle TN

  15. #14
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    Dec 2015
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    Sawyer County,WI USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Frazier View Post
    The goldenrod in the field next to us is just starting to pop. I'm looking forward to seeing what the bees do with it.

    OTOH, we have a large patch of garlic chives at one end of the garden which is in full bloom, and covered with bees. Made me wonder what garlic honey would be like (in my mind I see a shelf in the store, with clover honey, orange blossom honey, garlic honey...). But mostly they seem to be gathering pollen.

    Cheers,
    We also regularly have foragers at our chive Flowers, have never noticed that it flavored our honey though. Maybe if someone was planting a couple acres, perhaps

  16. #15
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Guilford, CT
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    325

    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Quote Originally Posted by enjambres View Post
    I am northeast of Albany, NY. I've had goldenrod nectar and pollen coming in for a couple of weeks. Different kinds of goldenrod give more or less nectar. And I think that it takes a warmer day for it to really flow, so these cool early mornings mean it is slow to start. Keep in mind, too, that "goldenrod" is more than one species, and they bloom in a long series from early August through about the third week of September. Yours will start and end a bit later in southern/central CT.

    You can smell the different odors from the different species as they are being cured, even from outside of the hive on warm evenings.

    IIRC correctly you had a severe drought last summer and since goldenrod is perennial, that may have curtailed its growth a bit this year. We didn't have drought here last summer and have had a lot of rain this summer so goldenrod here is lush and tall. I am not sure how the upcoming week of below normal temps will affect it - I am hoping it will prolong the flow.

    You will also see golden tinting on surfaces inside the hive from pollen clinging to the foragers.

    I am making an active effort to learn to tell the different species of goldenrod this year. So far, I have identified seven here on my farm, but there are 30 +/- in NY. Telling them apart is the first step in trying to figure out overall how nutritious (as opposed to simple productivity) goldenrod flow actually is for wintering bees. They are reputed to not be as healthy for bees as early honey; the honey has a higher ash content, and the pollen has a poorer protein and amino acid profile. Since they are almost entirely New World plants this makes sense.

    Nancy

    I'm on CT shore and Deepster and I have talked about this as well.

    I did however drive through your area today. There were areas in Hoosick under miles of power lines that were all yellow.

    You have fields upon fields of GR. We have roadside edges.

    I'm curious Nancy is your knotweed blooming or turning to seed. Couldn't tell.

  17. #16
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    Jun 2013
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    I don't know about the knotweed up here - I don't have any near me and have long-ago eradicated it from my farm. I do know of one patch about four miles from me and I will check it out and report back.

    I am west of the Hoosick/Rt 22 corridor.

    Nancy

  18. #17
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    Jun 2016
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    ann arbor, mi
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Quote Originally Posted by deepster View Post
    Hi Everyone, I am in CT and don't see any signs of much talked about golden rod flow! bumble bees and all kind of pollinators I had never seen before are on them but not the honey bees, can anyone explain this Any one experiencing Golden Rod flow in the northeast?
    Thanks
    I had the same concern last year here in MI. No bees were hitting the golden rod until end of season, it seems they like it towards the end of bloom or something, I am seeing the same thing this year. Im expecting in a week or two they will be all over them.

  19. #18
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    Dec 2015
    Location
    Sawyer County,WI USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Bees are hitting Goldenrod here, and its in its peak right now, with about 3 weeks left before our 'average' killing frost.

    Unfortunately, next weeks high temps are gonna be in the 50's....I Think we'll be buying more sugar.

  20. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Wolcott ct USA
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    29

    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    Quote Originally Posted by enjambres View Post
    I don't know about the knotweed up here - I don't have any near me and have long-ago eradicated it from my farm.

    Nancy
    What's your secret?

  21. #20
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    Jun 2013
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    Rensselaer County, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Golden rod ?

    What's my secret for eradicating knot weed: heavy farm equipment (Dixie cutter and backhoe) and gylphosate, year after year. I've been here for decades and started in getting rid of it my first year. Have almost eradicated purple loosestrife, too.

    I know, this is heresy for a beekeeper. But those invasive plants are unwelcome guests. I grow tons of other non-native, bee-faves which have much nicer manners and get along well with what's here. But those two I mentioned above are pigs.

    Nancy

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