Guess what? Gretchen Bee Ranch will again have a limited number of starter hives, or nucleus hives, available for sale this spring. We’ve had so much fun and great success with the nucleus sales, that we wanted to offer the hives again. This will be our third year and we’re so excited! If you think you might be interested in a hive from us, then keep reading.
We will have the nucleus hives ready for pick-up here in Seguin on Friday, March 22 and again on March 28. Please understand that factors beyond our control (such as the weather and the delivery of our queens) could force us to alter this schedule. The cost of the nucleus hives is $195 each. As a reminder, the nucleus hive is a starter beehive consisting of five frames: one frame of honey, one frame of honey & pollen and three frames of brood in various stages of development. The frames will be covered with bees, and one of these bees will be a queen from a reputable queen breeder that is already laying eggs. The frames and bees will be enclosed in a corrugated plastic box designed to transport bees. The frames will need to be transferred to your wooden hive boxes soon after you arrive home. Our experience with nucleus hives is that they build up quickly and often produce honey the first year.
On the day that the nucleus hives will be available for pick-up, we will also offer an optional class titled “How to Build Up Your Bees in the Spring.” This will be a two to three hour, hands-on class that will cover such topics as feeding your hive, evaluating your queen, enlarging the brood nest, swarm prevention, adding honey supers and mite control. There will be plenty of time for questions as well. The cost of the class is $59 per person. To register for the class, please email us and we’ll place you on the class roster. Again, this class is optional.
Our wonderful Honey House is still under construction so we may not have beekeeping equipment available for sale this spring. We recommend Mann-Lake as a reputable supplier with free shipping on most orders over $100. You can check the Mann-Lake site and see what you think. Even if you aren’t going to keep bees, it’s still fun to look at all the cool stuff.