Late last year we mentioned that Ranch Foreman Mike checked our hive and reported that it did not look like it was doing well. Unfortunately I have to report that the hive did not make it through the Winter and we are saddened!
This was a tough season for honeybees and beekeeping. Ours was not the only hive to be lost. Several of our clients lost hives. In some respects it is a bit of a head scratcher but it is also a reality. Not all hives thrive at the same intensity as others. Some of our hives that were booming right out of the gate in early Spring struggled during the cold season. Some of the ones that were looking suspect did great through Winter. Always hard to predict Mother Nature.
Our garden is just not the same as when they were around. They definitely brought a sense of energy and level of activity to our yard. They are truly missed.
Come mid-April we’ll start over again with a new batch of bees. We’ll be eagerly awaiting their arrival and will welcome them to our home!
How did your bees do this year? Drop us a line to let us know!
We’ve done a lot of talking about how honeybees benefit us humans but not too much on how they benefit a garden. They truly are a natural addition to any garden or landscape. You could say they are mutually beneficial to one another. Honeybees are fantastic pollinators (keeping our flowers, veggies and trees producing) and a blooming garden is basically a wonderful foraging/food source for the bees.
So as we go into winter time I’ve found that letting some of my plants and herbs go to flower has been great nectar source for my bees. Specifically I’ve let my basil plants go to flower and the bees have just gone crazy for them. So as wintertime comes upon us and flowering plants become less and less available, it is nice to give the bees a few last options in the yard.
So I say, rather then tear out the veggie/herb garden and prep your beds for winter, let them go a little bit longer and your local honeybees will thank you!
A look at French Laundry’s inspiring organic garden and Honeybees in Yountville, California.
Brand Foreman here. I’ll start this blog entry by stating that I love my day job! I’ve been fortunate enough to be working on a design project up in Rutherford, CA in the heart of Napa Valley. So recently I’ve been up in the area taking note of popular destinations in the region. In my note and photo taking wanderings I stumbled into The French Laundry. Of course I had heard of it (if you have not check the link) but I really had no idea exactly where it was. Wandering the main drag of Yountville found me walking right past it.
No I did not drop in for a bite to eat, but I did wander across the street to take a look at their organic gardens. What struck me as most interesting about them is that these are not gated or barb wired off to the public. They are actually set up as if to invite you to walk amongst them – and I did! So inspiring to check out and to think that the fruits and vegetables from these gardens go directly onto the plates of a 3 Star Michelin rated restaurant.
And who do we owe a great deal of thanks and respect to for this wonderful organic produce? Sure Tucker Taylor and Aaron Keefer (< whom I chatted with while there – a friendly lad) are the gardeners responsible for taking care of this wonderful plot of productive soil. Sure the chickens are cool, they “cluck” and probably supply some good fertilizer. What caught my eye and that I think deserve a lot of the culinary accolades are the Honeybees from their onsite bee hives.
Just think, no honeybees, no organic produce! What a bland tasting world would that be like? I think Thomas Keller just got chills up his spine! Honeybees clearly play a critical role in what makes French Laundry, French Laundry.
Have you dined at French Laundry or seen their gardens? Tells us about it, Foie Gras and all!