Christmas week and the bees in Dalkey are busy

Its hard to believe its Christmas week and the shortest day of the year and it was 14 degrees today in Dalkey. The bees were pretty busy, not as busy as last week but still plenty of them out collecting nectar and pollen.

The Coronilla in Dalkey is in full flower since the end of November and should flower right through until the start of the summer. I’ve discovered that its a great plant for the bees, offering an abundance of pollen and nectar through-out the winter and spring. The pollen is a light yellow color and you can see the pollen baskets on the bees packed with it. Continue reading

Soft set raw honey

Soft set raw honey

I’ve made up a big batch of soft set raw honey using the new creaming machine. Its been going continually for the last 3 weeks. It spends 15 minutes mixing and then an hour off.

Soft set or creamed honey is a process that controls the natural crystallization of the honey. By mixing the honey periodically, the size of the honey crystals are far smaller than letting it crystallize naturally. This gives the honey a very light and smooth texture making it a perfectly spreadable consistency, nearly like butter at room temperature. Continue reading

First bale of hay up to the cattle

What an amazing day up here in the valley after all that wind and rain. It was a cool crisp sunny morning here and a great day to get some jobs done outside. First up was to bring the first bale of hay up the road to the cattle. Grass is getting short so its time to give them something else to munch on over the winter. Continue reading