Working

When I went out to do my morning chores today, I couldn’t help but notice that the bees were taking advantage of the sunny, calm flying weather. The Lemon Queen sunflowers from last year volunteered in the Wild Garden, and are just now blooming.

 

sunflower with bee (click on any image to enlarge)

It looks like the honeybees weren’t interested this morning, but I did see a few smaller bees visiting the biggest flower.

 

Blue Fortune agastache with honeybee

The honeybees do seem to like the agastache though. They were sharing with some bumblebees. The agastache is also a favorite of the butterflies, though none were visiting this morning.

 

honeybees visiting male squash blossom

Down in the vegetable garden, the honeybees were all over the squash blossoms. They must have gotten an early start, because many of the male blossoms seemed to be stripped of pollen.

 

honeybees in Small Wonder spaghetti squash blossom

The blooms of the Small Wonder spaghetti squash seemed to be a big hit. Hopefully all this activity will translate into some nice fruit set on all the squashes. I don’t know if all the bees are from our hive, but I’m guessing some of them are on the HA payroll!

 

honeybee on female Tatume squash blossom

I also found a few honeybees visiting the spiderwort. I’m not sure if they were getting pollen or nectar from those blossoms.

 

honeybee on spiderwort flower

 

It also looks like mama bluebird has been working. She finished her third nest a couple of days ago. This morning I found the first egg. All I have to say about that is “Go Bluebirds!”. We have been seeing the juveniles lately. I’ll post some photos when I get a few more good ones. It has been a joy getting a few peeks at the young bluebirds learning to fly and catch insects. They have been out of the nest for two weeks now, and the female wasted no time starting on her third nest.

 

third bluebird nest of the season with one egg

And I guess I can’t escape work either. I have a bunch of squash that needs to be blanched and frozen. Looks like I have my work cut out for me today too!

 

summer squash waiting to be worked on

Later today I am meeting some of my old IT work buddies for lunch. Let me just say I am happy they are working where they are and I am not!

 

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11 Responses to Working

  1. Go bees! Go bluebirds! How incredibly cool to see what must be some of your bees out and about enjoying the flowers! I can’t believe the momma bluebird – teenagers to manage and she’s still building nests and laying more eggs! I guess time is of the essence and you have to make hay while the sun shines, huh? I look forward to the next report on her, new eggs and babies, the juveniles, and the bees and their hive!

    • Villager says:

      It is incredibly rewarding to see the bluebirds and their offspring. It’s a classic case of “if you build it, they will come”. After putting up several nest boxes, the bluebirds found them in less than a year. We do have prime habitat for bluebirds though: lots of open, mowed areas with trees and shrubs. And lots of tasty, unsprayed bugs to eat!

      I will do a bee update after my next hive inspection, which I need to do ASAP.

  2. Cindy says:

    What kind of container is that with the bird’s nest in it? It doesn’t look like a “regular” blue bird “house”.

  3. Robin says:

    It looks like there is a lot of Happiness going on at Happy Acres!

  4. Daphne says:

    I wish I had that many bees. I’ve been hand pollinating my squash to make sure they set. At least my cukes are parthenocarpic as I haven’t even seen a bee in the cucurbits yet this year. I hope they pick up the slack in July.

    • Villager says:

      We had bees last year, but there is a noticeable difference this year. There should be even more bees out and about when the hive gets up to full strength.

  5. I’m encouraged to see no less than THREE bees working a single squash blossom. I swear, last year we had to hand pollinate all of our squash, or we’d have had no fruit (hence the bee hives were added this spring). As we doing our great squash experiment this year, with over a dozen different varieties, I’m crossing my fingers and toes that our girls will be as diligent as yours 😉 Yay bees!

    • Villager says:

      There was a fourth bee on that blossom but she left before I could focus the camera! I would hope you would be out of the squash pollination business this year, with your four hives. 😀

  6. Jody says:

    That’s it, we’re trading property, then when you’ve worked ours into incredible shape like yours we can trade back!

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