Too late to Add Another Deep?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    East Windsor, NJ, USA
    Posts
    67

    Default Too late to Add Another Deep?

    I have 6 hives, half are 2 deep and the other half are 1 deep (splits and swarms). I did a full inspection on all of them today and found fantastic brood patterns in all the hives, totally filling 7/8 frames out of 10, but unfortunately almost no honey stored. Clearly, they are going to need some food to make it through winter. Is it too late in the season to add another deep so the hives have room to store enough honey to (hopefully) make it through the winter? I'm under the impression that if I feed them 1:1 syrup, they'll build out the comb faster, as most of the frames will be just be foundation. Then I'll switch to 2:1 syrup. How late in your fall season do you feed your 2:1 syrup?
    September tends to stay in the 70-80 range where I'm at and October has been warm in the past as well. I'm worried that by adding another deep, it'll give them too much space when they cluster.
    I'm also curious about keeping 3 deep hives vs just 2, but I might have left it too late to expand.
    Thoughts? Or am I overthinking it and should just add the **** deeps already.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Lumpkin County, GA
    Posts
    919

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    If you have drawn frames and the hives with only 1 deep can get a second box... only if there is a population that can support a second box. If you don't have drawn frames, then don't add a second box. They will never draw them out this late in the year. Get to feeding the hives now, before it gets cold.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    East Windsor, NJ, USA
    Posts
    67

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    What if I add shallows instead of deeps? I have tons of drawn frames in that size.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    international falls, Mn
    Posts
    699

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    I think shallows/meds would bee better. If the frames were drawn better yet. Worst case scenario is that they do nothing to it and when fall/winter sets in for real you puil off the empty and its warmer in the box

    ==McBee7==

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Drayton Valley, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    248

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    I added deeps last week, undrawn frames with foundation, to 4 hives. Started feeding 2:1 sugar/water syrup. They have 6 to 7 weeks to draw comb and store syrup. Give it a try! I'm way north of you and it seems to be going OK. If no comb drawn, no harm, no foul. If they build out another deep, then great!
    There is no harm done in trying for max Winter stores, in northern latitudes. Assess the situation before Winter close-up. If nothing is drawn or no stores, remove the empty deeps.
    This worked for me last year, so I'm doing it again. It's a hassle constantly filling feeders, but there is no replacement for good winter stores.
    We are still having summer temperatures but no nectar or pollen sources now. Bees are drinking it down, and eating pollen sub. I'm being optimistic!
    Best regards,
    Brian

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    international falls, Mn
    Posts
    699

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    Sugar is cheap insurance.. I just threw away my extra sugar bricks from this spring....I'll make more for 2018...The only danger of syrup now is that they dont get it consentrated by winter and there is a moisture problem...I lost a favorite hive last year to moisture late in the fall///early winter....a:{

    ==McBee7==

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Drayton Valley, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    248

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    I lost a favourite hive to starvation last year. So many 'warm-ups' and following hard freezes killed them. That was a 2-deep. My 3-deep made it fine.
    Post-mortem on the 2-deep was they still had 5 untouched frames of honey and a sugar board up top. Honey to the outside where it was inaccessible in freeze following warm-up. Stores need to be 'up', so the heat of the cluster keeps it accessible and available.
    Just my slow navigation of the northern beekeeping learning curve.
    I am aiming for all 3-deeps now, going into winter. It's a goal I seek and I think the gurlz are on it too.
    Best regards,
    Brian
    115W, 53N, El.850M

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    East Windsor, NJ, USA
    Posts
    67

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    How does this plan sound?
    On the 3 hives that are 1 deep, put a super with drawn comb (I'm not sure there is enough population in the colony to draw out the comb fast enough with time to fill with food). On the 3 hives that are 2 deep, add another deep with as many frames of drawn comb as I have with the rest being foundation. Then feed them all like crazy. I'll keep an eye on them all to see who is storing.
    I can also throw on sugar boards when it gets too cold for syrup. I used them last year and they seemed to go over pretty well (1 of 3 hives survived the winter).

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    7,861

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    I'm worry about your hive population going into winter. If they have enough big fat winter bees then
    you can just skip the syrup super with drawn comb. Give them the 20 lbs. of sugar bricks to overwinter in. Then
    winter prep as usual.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  11. #10
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Traverse City, MI
    Posts
    83

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    One of my hives population is booming, I put a third deep on undrawn foundation frames,bis all I have...first year...feeding 2:1 like crazy, I am hoping they are able to store like crazy, and get some of the frames drawn out, also give them something to do, they are a borderline hot hive, requeening next year...I will monitor them drawing out the frames, population, and will see what they look like when leaves fall.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Bergen County, NJ
    Posts
    907

    Default Re: Too late to Add Another Deep?

    I vote drawn mediums on top and feed, feed and feed some more of that 2:1 or 5:3. If they are healthy going into winter, they will survive with a 3 inch sugar rim board. I am planning to overwinter more (than last year) single deep colonies here in northern NJ. And I have couple of MP style 4-over-4 Nucs. Can't wait to see how they do.

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