If everything goes well, spring is not usually when you harvest honey. When we picked up our hive last spring, we didn’t expect a harvest until Fall 2015 at the earliest. In Vermont the bees need a full year to grow into a healthy hive and go into their first winter at full strength. If they make it through, the second fall you can expect your first honey.
Our bees did not make it through the oppressively cold winter this year, but it appears they died before eating most of their stores.
We’ll go through a hive autopsy soon to determine what happened, but for now, it’s honey extracting time!
Honey extraction, while a bit messy, proved much easier than expected even without an expensive extractor.
We’re sad they didn’t make it, but they left us quite the parting gift: 60 lbs (20 quarts) of honey.