When it comes to beekeeping, two is better than one. Or is it? Does it ever make sense to have only one colony? Attend any bee club meeting or read any honey bee books, and you'll come across the recommendation to start with at least 2 hives. There are solid reasons for this advice! Two … Continue reading Does it Make Sense to Start with Only ONE Honey Bee Colony?
Restoring our native prairie has been one of the most exhausting and frustrating experiences. Read on to see what's happened in the past 3 years and where we are headed next. We chose to restore the 12 acres of tilled field to native prairie in order to restore the land. Our farm has been cropped … Continue reading Native Prairie Restoration Years 1-3
This article is part of our Native Plant Series and features one pollinator friendly, drought tolerant US native plant hardy to at least zone 4. Minnesota is tough place to live! It's even tougher for plants. Long cold winters are the hallmark of our state, but most people are unaware that the middle strip of … Continue reading Ohio Spiderwort – Edible, Hardy, and Beautiful
From the very first day we walked the land, I have been looking for bees. And they were scarce. I would occasionally see a bumble bee and I did see a honey bee or two - but not very many. Any flowers at the property were usually devoid of life. Maybe it was because the … Continue reading If You Build It – They Will Come….. Attracting pollinators and breeding a better berry
Quick Rundown: ~ 11 acres of prairie planted the end of May 2017 followed by dry hot summer. No noticeable germination of prairie seeds in 2017. Spring 2018 was very dry but the early summer was quite wet. Black Eyed Susan came out in full force by mid summer 2018 followed by spotted bee balm. This … Continue reading Black Eyed Susan is Dominating our Prairie – Uses, Plans, and Lessons to provide adequate honey bee forage
Here are two more shots from the prairie - taken July 6, 2018. You can see a lot of black eyed susans. I walked the entire prairie and was able to identify at least 7 or 8 of the 48 species we planted - and a whole lot more that we didn't. It's so beautiful … Continue reading Another Quick Prairie Update 7/06/2018
Prairie: photos taken June 21, 2018 We seeded our native prairie in May 2017. We seeded very heavily - 48 different species, a high percentage of forbs - 136lbs of seeds for 10.6 acres - 12.8 lbs/acre and about $800/acre just in seed costs! I'm spelling it all out because so far it has been … Continue reading Prairie Restoration – Year 2