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While driving to work this morning I was surprised to see some goldenrod in bloom.:applause: Seems awful early to me! Not complaining though.
 

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While driving to work this morning I was surprised to see some goldenrod in bloom.:applause: Seems awful early to me! Not complaining though.
Not all goldenrod is created equal. We have an early goldenrod that doesn't seem to have much value. Later goldenrod, I think Canadiensis and/or tall goldenrod, are much better. Goldenrod is a big family with more than a dozen species and probably more subspecies and or minor local species.
 

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We were noticing it in West Virginia this weekend. I have a chart that shows Canada Goldenrod as July-October.
 

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Flower Plant Shrub Flowering plant Garden Flower Plant giant goldenrod Flowering plant Goldenrod

I purchased some Golden Rod last year, 'Baby Gold' Goldenrod Perennial - 25 Plants - Solidago". It blooms from mid June to late fall here. When it comes to the honey bees, it is worthless. When it comes to wasps and other insects, they love it.
 

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I also noticed on the ditch banks what appeared to be goldenrod and was going to ask some other beekeepers if was. seems rather early.
Does it make your honey smell and taste bad?

G.
 

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We're not planting any yet. We have diverse forage in our area. Our bees throw the book away when it comes to working specific plants. Quantity seems to impress them more than quality. Our "pollenator garden" books say to plant forage in dense patches, and it seems to be a correct assessment. Bumblebees, etc, will work scattered plants but our honeybees want a good stand of one species, and then they want it to be the most productive thing they can find at the time.
 

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View attachment 12577 View attachment 12578

I purchased some Golden Rod last year, 'Baby Gold' Goldenrod Perennial - 25 Plants - Solidago". It blooms from mid June to late fall here. When it comes to the honey bees, it is worthless. When it comes to wasps and other insects, they love it.
We're not planting any yet. We have diverse forage in our area. Our bees throw the book away when it comes to working specific plants. Quantity seems to impress them more than quality. Our "pollenator garden" books say to plant forage in dense patches, and it seems to be a correct assessment. Bumblebees, etc, will work scattered plants but our honeybees want a good stand of one species, and then they want it to be the most productive thing they can find at the time.
Finiky lil- bee-aches arent they?? :D
I was scratching my head about them the other day... A good number of bees from two of our hives were foraging on chicory and queen anne's lace within about 15-25 feet of the hive (not great numbers of either of these, just "some"). There are well over 100 acres of flowering alfalfa within a mile (lots within 1/2 mile) of this location. And that's just going in one direction. Not sure what to think of these goofballs. :)
 

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Our local bee supplier says his bees work Queen Anne's Lace, which anybody would tell you is lousy bee forage. Ours were working crown vetch for a couple of weeks, which most here will tell you they don't like. In each case, it was blooming copiously.

Meanwhile, they are not seen on things they're supposed to love, things the bumblebees are all over. Only the bees know why. You have too many brain cells to think like a bee, and your eyes don't see the same colors they do. Plus, when is the last time you stuck your tongue in a flower to see what it offered?
 

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Our local bee supplier says his bees work Queen Anne's Lace, which anybody would tell you is lousy bee forage. Ours were working crown vetch for a couple of weeks, which most here will tell you they don't like. In each case, it was blooming copiously.

Meanwhile, they are not seen on things they're supposed to love, things the bumblebees are all over. Only the bees know why. You have too many brain cells to think like a bee, and your eyes don't see the same colors they do. Plus, when is the last time you stuck your tongue in a flower to see what it offered?
The bees on the chicory were coming back with baskets full of pollen (white or really light blue). The bees on the queen anne's lace just landed on it and ran around really fast and then were on to the next one. It's like they were just trying to get some pollen stuck to them and knew it wasn't worth sticking around on. I didn't see any of the bees with much pollen on them at all. Just a tiny bit. Maybe they hit the chicory in the early morning (when I was watching) and then hit the alfalfa later... who knows.

Just wish these two swarm captures were a bit stronger to take advantage of the alfalfa in the area.
 

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I also have Goldenrod blooming. I noticed it yesterday. Not like the fall flow but it is blooming. Never seen it this early before.
 

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I think there is some blooming earlier, but it may be stressed plants. Of course there's some variability but here the big bloom doesn't come until mid/late August.
The bloom doesent start here till then usually too. I am seeing fields of it come in now that didnt show till mid august last year. The bees are already bringing in the pollen and have been for a couple weeks. It will be full blown in another week....... a month early. G
 

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there are over 50 kinds of goldenrod. In upstate ny the early bloom does not yield as well as later kinds. flattop is one of the better for yields. can't remember the other 2-3 kinds that yield well. ya, fall is coming.
 

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On the Pollen Front.... Rose of Sharon, My Dad has probably 30-40 of these giant bushes in his yard, the bumbles are running off the Honeybees. It is nothing to see 100-200 bumbles covered in white. Luckily with pruning they are not all blooming together. This is a tough girl that hung around, even the wilted blooms were covered in pollen. I imagine they will be able to take advantage of it before its over. G

Honeybee Insect Bee Membrane-winged insect Invertebrate
Insect Invertebrate Honeybee Membrane-winged insect Hoverfly
 

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Thanks for the Rose of Sharon pics. I often thought about what my bees are bringing white pollen while
their entire bodies are covered in white dust. Now I know.
The goldenrods I planted in our backyard is in the dearth for 2 years in a row. No blooms yet as I am afraid
it will be another year of no blossoms. You think I should mulch and water them hoping that they will bloom
this Fall?
 

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Some early goldenrod just started to bloom here, a little early, but most isn't even close. Usually comes on in mid to late august. With all the rain we have had, ground moisture is up, so if we were to get a bunch of nice warm weather this fall, we might be in for a.nice crop.
 

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One thing my father did was to collect goldenrod flower clusters (when we were on a late fall/early winter trip to visit family) after they'd bloomed and set seed, from locations farther north than our New Jersey location outside Philadelphia. His theory was that the different goldenrod species and strains that were adapted for New York state and southern Ontario would perhaps extend the flow for our bees. It's a good theory, I think. Getting an extra week of flow might be the difference in a few frames of honey per hive. Not sure whether or not it worked...no control arm for that study.
 

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Thanks for the Rose of Sharon pics. I often thought about what my bees are bringing white pollen while
their entire bodies are covered in white dust. Now I know.
The goldenrods I planted in our backyard is in the dearth for 2 years in a row. No blooms yet as I am afraid
it will be another year of no blossoms. You think I should mulch and water them hoping that they will bloom
this Fall?
Wish i had a better camera. As far as the goldenrod, I dont know, Its a weed here, we dont have to plant it, its in field edges, road ditches and overgrown fields galore. Good Luck. G
 
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