A local friend of mine, JohnZ, is starting out with bees. I gave him one of my hives a couple of months ago. John has donated a few useful items to my farm workshop so when he asked about bees, I was happy to help out!
The first inspection since the hive was moved went well. I was taking some photos and JohnZ was checking the hive. I got stung on my hand. Being a hero and not wearing my gloves at first.
His property is about 10km from our farm. It is about 50 acres and several years ago he embarked on a large scale direct seed planting of shelter belts. All up I estimate there are now about 10 acres of shelter belts. These plantings are now providing useful bee forage and I intend to keep an eye on what is flowering when. The belts are now mostly eucalypts, mellaleucas and leptospernums. There were a lot of acacias planted in the mix, but these appear to have not done so well. In any case, the species that are left are excellent bee forage for nectar.
My hives seem to have been struggling to find nectar around Feb-Mar. Not a lot is in flower so I am looking into what I can plant now to provide some additional forage during mid summer. We can always move our hives over to JohnZ’s.
These are some of the local species.
* summer flowering
- Eucalyptus kitsonia *
- E. viminalas *
- E. ovata *
- Melaleuca ericifolia
- M. squarossa *
- Leptospernum continenale
- L. lanigerum
- L. laevigatum