The days are becoming just that little bit longer, the sun is just that little bit brighter and this week I’ve seen crocus flowering everywhere.

Yes folks, the new beekeeping season is almost here; time to get excited about this year’s plans and schemes.

Christmas mince pie binging gave me plenty of time to think about what I’d like to get up to in the new season. I’ve set myself four goals which are challenging but achievable.

  • Build a new apiary – I’ve found a new site which seems rather nice. In March I’ll place the hive stands on the site, with three overwintered nucs to follow in April.
  • Single size boxes – over Christmas I read the Rose Hive method by Tim Rowe. I was inspired to do so by an excellent talk given to our association by Liz Knee who only uses super boxes in her hives.  I’m planning on using national size boxes rather than the Rose as I have a stock of these.
  • Queen rearing – raising my own queens has been a goal for some time. Queen rearing is one of the skills which many insist isn’t that difficult but appears utterly bemusing to those that haven’t given it a go.  I’ve booked myself on a weekend course in June to becoming indoctrinated to this weird sub-sect of beekeeping – I wonder if there is a secret handshake?
  • Foundation-less frames – on the Internet it would seem that going foundation-less is a common practice in the United States, but, I know only a few people in the UK who have foregone wired foundation. Rumours are that foundation prices this year are going up so this seems a jolly good idea.

Between now and the end of March I need to make up some new frames, clean a few boxes and do a stock take to make sure everything is ready for April when I jump feet first into the new season.

I wish you all well in whatever plots, plans or schemes you are hatching for this year’s season.

Good luck!