This is from our second year of producing maple syrup. We tapped roughly 100 trees and still had a lot to learn about syrup production.
This shows our 125 gallon tank for sap collecting. We've since gotten bigger tanks and more trees to tap.
This evaporator was good to start out with, but the more trees we tapped the less we used this cooker.
The cupola you see on top of the building lets steam out. If we didn't have the cupola the steam inside the building would be so thick that we couldn't see anything!
Our second year of syrup production bottling system. We've since upgraded to a water-jacketed bottler and an ove-glove.
This picture shows blue bells flowering in mid-May. Blue bells are one of the first plants to flower in the spring and are good bee forage.
My friend Nick decided to write an inspiring message to the bees. I'm sure if they could read they would have made more honey!
This shows several three pound packages of bees. Using packaged bees is an easy way of starting a new hive.
From left: Nick, Jesse, and Jeff.
This hive has two bottom boxes (Brood and Deep), the smaller box on top contains the extra honey that we get to keep.
Sometimes on hot days a large group of bees will appear on the outside of a hive, this helps to keep the hive cooler.
It's late July and the hives are full of bees!
As a beekeeper you do not want to see a swarm of bees. This means a large number of bees have vacated a hive and eaten lots of honey before they left. Performing a split on a hive can help prevent this from happening in the first place!
When the bees have swarmed they are looking for a new home. Their stomachs are full of honey which makes them unable to sting, they are tightly grouped together and very docile.
Light Amber Honey - 1st Place White Honey - 2nd Place Block of Beeswax - 1st Place (photo courtesy of Mike Hiatt)