July 18, 2014...Although I walk past this plant just about every day, I never took notice of it until it started blooming about a week ago.  I became curious whether bees would be attracted to it.  Yes, there were...even as early as 8:30 am..

July 18, 2014…Although I walk past this New Zealand Flax  just about every day, I never took notice of it until it started blooming about a week ago. I became curious whether bees would be attracted to it. Yes, they were…even as early as 8:30 am..

July 17, 2014...bee going deep for nectar.  I recently read a website that honeybees can't get the nectar from New Zealand Flax, and yet I saw many honeybees attending these blossoms.

July 17, 2014…bee going deep for nectar. I recently read a website that stated honeybees can’t get the nectar from New Zealand Flax, and yet I saw many honeybees attending these blossoms.

July 12, 2014...Hummingbirds also visited, but were often chased away by rivals.  Why is that?  There is plenty to go around.  "Why can't they cooperate for the common good," my wife asks? I have no answer...Why can't humans cooperate for the common good?  Looking at our blue planet from space, seeing nothing around that's inhabitable for light year distances, you'd think we'd want to work together for our mutual survival.  Just some thoughts in light of the current world affairs.

July 12, 2014…Hummingbirds also visited, but were often chased away by rivals. Why is that? There is plenty to go around. “Why can’t they cooperate for the common good,” my wife wonders?  I have no idea…Why can’t humans cooperate for the common good? Looking at our blue planet from space, seeing nothing around that’s habitable for light year distances, you’d think we’d want to work together for our mutual survival.
Just some random thoughts in light of the disturbing current world affairs.

July 14, 2014...July 14, 2014...When I saw reddish orange pollen coming into my Bee-atrice Log Hive, I wondered where it was coming from.being transported into the hive...perhaps nectar too?

July 14, 2014…When I saw reddish orange pollen coming into my Bee-atrice Log Hive, I wondered where it was coming from.

Reddish orange pollen.  I was wondering where that was coming from

Reddish orange pollen, coming from the New Zealand Flax.

Ants like it too.  When I was shooting the video I waited and waited until the ant emerged, then another, and another.

Ants like it too. When I was shooting the video I waited and waited until this ant emerged, then another came up,  and another.

History of flax use in New Zealand

The Short Story of Flax in New Zealand

How to clean and harvest New Zealand Flax

How to make a small purse using the leaves.

June 29, 2014...Honeybees and hummingbirds get nectar from these little gems.

June 29, 2014…Honeybees and hummingbirds get nectar from these little gems.  We’ve decided to grow more alliums next year because the bees love them and the deer don’t.

June 23, 2014...We started these seeds under lights in the house, hoping they would turn out well.  We're very happy with the results and the bees love them too.

June 23, 2014…We started these Cosmos seeds under lights in the house, hoping they would turn out well. We’re very happy with the results and the bees love them too.

June 10, 2014...Honeybee getting nectar.

June 10, 2014…Honeybee getting nectar on this Cosmos

June 16, 2014...This little stand of California poppies planted itself on my Hugelkulture bed.  In the background you can see some wallflowers (Erysimum).

June 16, 2014…This little stand of California poppies planted itself on my Hugelkulture bed. In the background you can see some wallflowers (Erysimum).

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What kind of bee is this?  Maybe Amelia or standingoutinmyfield will know.

What kind of bee is this? Maybe Amelia or standingoutinmyfield will know.

A new type of poppy, called a Twister poppy.  Attracts bumblebees and is a pay grade above the California poppy.

A new type of poppy, called a Twister poppy. Attracts bumblebees and is a pay grade or two above the California poppy.

I started the Phacellia seeds in the house to attract the honeybees, but rarely do I see honeybees on them. No problem, we need to help the bumblebee as well, in this case the Yellow-faced bumblebee. (bombus Vosnosenkii)

I started the Phacellia seeds to attract the honeybees, but rarely do I see honeybees on them. No problem, we need to help the bumblebee as well, in this case the Yellow-faced bumblebee. (bombus Vosnosenkii)

Relatively short-lived, this Veronica Longifolia, 'Pink Eveline' served as a nectar source for a short time.

Relatively short-lived, (blossom wise) this Veronica Longifolia, ‘Pink Eveline’ served as a nectar source for a short time.

Speedwell, Veronica Spicata, 'Royal Candles.'  The colors of this one stand out well.

Speedwell, Veronica Spicata, ‘Royal Candles.’ The colors  stand out well.

June 29, 2014...Sometimes when the bumblebee exits this blossom, it will pick up a streak of white pollen

June 29, 2014…Sometimes when the bumblebee exits this blossom, it will pick up a streak of white pollen up it’s back.

Piano composition by Kiera O’Hara.

Music by “The Bottom Rung”

July 1, 2014...Tulip tree is still looking good.

July 1, 2014…Tulip tree is still looking good.

As a survival tree, the tulip tree was also known as a canoe tree because the wood is lightweight and was preferred by many Native American tribes, in the construction of canoes.  The leaves can be used as a poultice to treat sores.  Tea can be made from the inner bark to treat fevers and indigestion.  The bark can be chewed on for an aphrodisiac.

As a survival tree, the tulip tree was also known as a canoe tree because the wood is lightweight and was preferred by many Native American tribes, in the construction of canoes. The leaves can be used as a poultice to treat sores. Tea can be made from the inner bark to treat fevers and indigestion. The bark can be chewed on for an aphrodisiac.

There are a late bloomers left.

There are still a few late bloomers left.

Blossom withering.  Hope my bees got some nectar.

Most of the blossoms are withering. Hope my bees got some nectar.

Seed pods have formed.  It'll be interesting to watch them dry up.  I want to get some seeds...maybe next month.

Seed pods have formed. It’ll be interesting to watch them dry up. I want to get some seeds…maybe next month.

June 8, 2014...Bee-atrice has BEES.  It's been a rough time for her, but I think this one will take.

June 8, 2014…Bee-atrice has BEES. It’s been a rough time for her, but I think this one will take.

June 16, 2014...10th day of bees in Bee-atrice.  I think they will stay this time.

June 16, 2014…10th day of bees in Bee-atrice Log Hive.   I think they will stay this time.

While I was out of town, a huge prime swarm chose Bee-atrice Log Hive for a home.  I knew if we waited long enough, we’d get lucky…I just wish I could have witnessed the swarm moving in.  Bee-atrice was happy.  She had been rejected twice.  I had tried to console her after she had been rejected by two small swarms that I had given her.  I told her that “rejection” might more appropriately be referred to as “redirection.”  Those small swarms would not have made it anyway.  I told her that she just had to be patient until the right swarm came along.

April 27, 2014...Pat drops the little cast swarm into Bee-atrice.  They stay a total of two days, then take off to parts unknown.

April 27, 2014…I drop the little cast swarm into Bee-atrice log hive. They stay a total of two days, then take off for parts unknown.

May 25, 2014...A second chance presents itself, in the form of a swarm in the apple tree.  I get the swarm bucket ready.

May 25, 2014…A second chance presents itself, in the form of a swarm in the apple tree.   I bag it and drop it into Bee-atrice.  I thought for sure it would stay, but after 8 days, it took off for the Asian Pear tree.  I started thinking something was wrong with Bee-atrice…then it dawned on me…maybe I was the problem.  Maybe I should just back off and let nature take it’s course…thirteen days later (while I’m away), a huge swarm picks out Bee-atrice.   She later tells me, SHE rejected those little swarms, not the other way around.  I guess she didn’t want to hurt my feelings.

June 9. 2014...lots of bee traffic at the entrance.

June 9. 2014…lots of bee traffic at the entrance.

June 10, 2014...This is the first time I've ever seen 94 degrees register on the thermometer.  This is the optimal temperature for brood.

June 10, 2014…This is the first time I’ve ever seen 94F degrees (34C) register on the thermometer. This is the optimal temperature for brood.  Three days ago it read 60 degrees (the ambient temperature)

June 9, 2014...the bees can be seen through the observation window.  If they stay, we'll be able to watch the comb building process.

June 9, 2014…the bees can be seen through the observation window.  If they stay, we’ll be able to watch the comb building process.

June 16, 2014...10th day, natural comb can be seen already, through the top side entrance.

June 16, 2014…10th day, natural comb can be seen already, through the top side entrance.

June 19, 2014...Day 13, this is where the bees hang out at night while they are waiting for the comb to be built.

June 19, 2014…Day 13, this is where the bees hang out at night while they are waiting for the comb to be built.

June 19, 2014...In this slightly out of focus shot, you can see how far the bees have built the natural comb...almost to the top of the observation window...a length of about 14 inches (35 cm).

June 19, 2014…Day 13, in this slightly out of focus shot, you can see how far the bees have built the natural comb…almost to the top of the observation window…a length of about 14 inches (35 cm).

Drones dropping down every time I uncover the observation window…

The carving of Bee-atrice.

Getting her ready for a swarm last year.

Bee-atrice’s debut

A Bonnet for Bee-atrice

 

“And then the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was greater that the risk it took to bloom.”   Anaïs Nin

May 13, 2014...Showing signs of swelling.  Outside starting to split open.

May 13, 2014…Showing signs of swelling. Outside starting to split open.

May 21, 2014...Showing some color on blossom.

May 15, 2014…It’s swelling up, getting ready to burst open.

May 27, 2014...Tulip Tree blossom emerges at long last.

May 27, 2014…Tulip Tree blossom emerges at long last.

May 27, 2014...The inside of a new blossom is well worth the wait.

May 27, 2014…The inside of a new blossom is well worth the wait.

May 27, 2014...this honeybee got down to business, really got into the work of getting nectar.

This honeybee got down to work.  In the video you can see the bee moving to the rhythms of “Havana.”

…and gets it from the honeybees!

June 2, 2014...The pink poppy just opened up this morning.  Maybe that's why there are so many bees on it.  Many more than the red ones.

June 2, 2014…This pink poppy (Pink Princess) just opened up this morning. The honeybees seem to favor it over the red poppies..

By contrast, there is only one bee at a time on the red poppies.  Maybe they think it's more dignified. :-)

By contrast, there is only one bee at a time on the red poppies. Maybe they think it’s more dignified. :-)

May 29, 2014...At one time there were five bees in here.  By the time I grabbed the camera they had all left the scene.

May 29, 2014…My wife said there were five bees on this earlier, but when I grabbed the camera, I only caught one bee.

May 28, 2014...The New Zealand Cabbage trees are blooming.  Our bees love it.

May 28, 2014…My neighbor’s  New Zealand Cabbage trees are blooming. I’m glad it’s on someone else’s property because there is a strong odor associated with it.  Our bees love it.

May 28, 2014...New Zealand Cabbage has been blooming awhile.  There is  a strong odor that attracts the bees as they are numerous.

May 28, 2014…New Zealand Cabbage has been blooming awhile.  Our bees are all over it, all day.

May 27, 2014...A skipper is probing the depths for nectar.  In the video, you can see it try several spots before finally succeeding.  The bees love this plant as well.

May 27, 2014…A skipper is probing the depths of this Pink Chintz Thyme for nectar. In the video, you can see it try several spots before finally succeeding. The bees love this plant as well.

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