August 23, 2008

Recipe: Thick Syrup for Fall Feeding (no refined sugar)

Stir together in a quart-sized mason jar:
3 parts honey (24 oz.)
1/2-1 part water (4-8 oz.)
15 drops spearmint essential oil
5-10 drops lemongrass essential oil

When Fall feeding, colonies should be fed in a way that encourages the bees to take a lot of thick syrup in a short period of time, which "fattens" the bees in preparation for Winter.

You might wonder, as I did, what "a way that encourages the bees" is. It's not like you can stand there shaking a stick, commanding the bees, "Take this thick syrup. Quick!"* Well, there's no teacher like experience, and so a few dead bees later we can tell you what not to do.


Pearl of Wisdom
* A drop or two of anise oil will probably do the trick.

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