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Discussion Starter #1
I need help with this one.....A friend came over for a visit to the yard and we pulled the last three supers. They were full of honey and heavy. We took them back to extract them and noticed 8 of the 27 seemed darker than the others. Same hive but thought that they obviously foraged somewhere else for awhile. Spun out the darker ones separate and when it went in the bottles was the darkest I have ever seen. It was a thinner consistency as well and had a very strong taste. I know about a kilometer up the road is an organic farm specializing in garlic. Could this be the reason why? I worry that there is something wrong with this batch as I have never come across it before. Wondered if anyone else had this. The rest of the frames are a beautiful golden color.
 

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Years ago I had a batch of buckwheat. First time ever the bee club gave me award for best variety honey. I Sold it at a premium. So how does it taste besides strong.
 

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I thought I had replied to you My-smokepole but I don't see it here yet so I will try a shorter version, lol. The taste starts off sweet as it should but then has an after taste that reminds me of smoke or gamy or ? Hard to put my finger on it. As I mentioned on the last one I don't know where the girls would find buckwheat around here but they got into something different for sure.
 

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011 (640x506).jpg Our honey changes quite a bit over the years and seasons.
Left to right is Spring '17, Fall '17 and Spring '18.

Alex
 

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Maybe Japanese Knotweed honey? We had a fantastic knotweed flow here (northern WV) this year. The honey looks like used motor oil in the jar but if you spread a thin layer on a white plate it is actually red. I have alot of people that ask for it. We plan on extracting this weekend before they start putting away the goldenrod. I really like it but it does crystallize faster than spring honey.
 

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... the darkest I have ever seen. It was a thinner consistency as well and had a very strong taste. ...
Another possibility - honeydew.
Either way, send it my way if not wanted.
Dark and strong is good, whatever that is.
:)
 

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My experience with buckwheat is that it doesn't start off sweet. I have never seen bees on my garlic and it is usually out of the ground by mid-July.

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well thanks everyone for the input. I guess I'll never know but will be curious if I get the same next year. Interesting GregV the number of people who like the dark stuff. mcon672 I like the comparison with Motor Oil, lol, this stuff is thinner than my normal honey. I would have to see if honeydew and Japanese Knotweed even grows up here in our climate. I am going to post in our local facebook page and ask if anyone does or knows someone who does grow buckwheat. Jack
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Jack, honeydew doesn't exactly "grow". It is secreted by aphids and the bees harvest it. My understanding is also that darker and more robust flavored honeys often sell at a significant premium. You may want to check the moisture content to make sure that it won't ferment. The honey I harvested this year came in at 19.8% moisture and had to be dried down.
 

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In my climate the Goldenrod is coming into full bloom. Some of my local members have commented on the taste & smell of the honey. "Hives smell like dirty socks, but the taste is good". Could this be the reason in your area? :)
 

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You can send your honey in for pollen testing if you really want to know. Its not 100% accurate as far as ratio of species but will get you in the ballpark.
 

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This year I was able to enter all four color classes at the State Fair. (Light, light Amber, Amber and dark amber). Typically honey is very lite in spring and darkensthru summer/fall

 

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Discussion Starter #16
Hi burns375. I did find out that the organic farm (200 acres) up the road that sells garlic also had buckwheat. They are just over a km away. 1.6 miles....lol. I also found out there is a farmer who grows buckwheat about 4 km away but don't think the girls would fly that far. Interesting that my honey has gone the same route as your picture. I found that the lighter honey had a smother taste. My only concern with the buckwheat ????? honey is the consistency. Going to research how to check then how to get rid of some moisture without pasteurizing it. I have a refractometer here and think that is the first step. Fourth year beekeeper but still a newbie and this place is a great resource to learn from. I thank everyone who responded. Jack
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Hi Claytone. Not sure about the Goldenrod. There has been plenty of it but the super that had the dark stuff was one in the middle and not sure if the Goldenrod was really abundant then. The smelly sock think is confusing as it very well could have been me. LOL. Jack
 

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This spring I quickly sold out my "Premium Dark" honey from a table stand at the end of the driveway. The honey was actually left in the hive over winter where it darkened to an extremely dark red; usually it would be a light color. Rave reviews from buyers who wanted more!
 
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