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I live in the land of Cotton. But it seems no one plants it for at least 5 miles around me. Would it be worth taking some colonies off the soybeans and put them on the cotton? Doesn't seem to be much from the beans.
 

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I had two nucs last summer, and they did well on Cotton blooms in August and September. They went from five frames to more than 10 frames in a six week period. The same bees are presently waiting on the same cotton field to bloom. They planted late so the blooms may be month away. Cotton has a major bloom period, but then it blooms at a much lessor rate for several more weeks. I'm a three year beekeeper, and I have no experience with soybeans.
 

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I did real good my first year. put my hive on a friends cotton farm and filled the super fast. honey was nearly white and very good. the next year his neighbor sprayed and i lost my bees, haven't tried since:(.that was ten years ago in Morehouse Parish LA. moved and no cotton around here. It shure was good honey!
 

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My cousin put his two hives down on the farm because he could not keep them in town behind his house. We picked a sunny spot in the swamp between our cotton in the front fields and the cotton in the back fields hoping he could keep them away from the spraying. Does anyone know if the bees die from being sprayed or visiting a sprayed field? I know there are a lot of permanent beekeepers in the area and there is no way someone could keep their bees from going to a sprayed field. Just wondering.
 

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I don't think the cotton varieties here make nectar.

Historically, I've gotten big yields off cotton. Last year was a terrible year for cotton and now again this year the cotton simply isn't producing as expected. I'm still hopeful that this year will turn and we'll fill some boxes. Perhaps there's been a change in type of cotton planted.
 

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Historically, I've gotten big yields off cotton. Last year was a terrible year for cotton and now again this year the cotton simply isn't producing as expected. I'm still hopeful that this year will turn and we'll fill some boxes. Perhaps there's been a change in type of cotton planted.
Yep, self fertile varieties aren't producing nectar like they used to.
 

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I'm surrounded by cotton, it's everywhere .... The only thing I ever get from cotton is socks, jeans and underwear!
 

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Yep, self fertile varieties aren't producing nectar like they used to.
I can see plenty of bees in the cotton, but supers are not filling like I'd expect. We got a huge rain yesterday, and temps will be close to 90 this weekend. If these conditions don't result in nectar, then nothing will. I'm going to talk with my farmer to see if he has changed seed in the last 2 years.
 

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scpossum: yes to both your questions. Ask the farmer to notify you when spraying will occur so you can net or move your hives depending on how close they are to the fields.
 
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