Beautiful Mornings!

The mornings over the past few days have been crisp, bright and warm!

Letting the animals out is even more of a joy when the weather is so gorgeous. You forget what is going on in the world.

After all, they don’t have a clue and every new day is another adventure.

Beautiful Mornings!

The mornings over the past few days have been crisp, bright and warm!

Letting the animals out is even more of a joy when the weather is so gorgeous. You forget what is going on in the world.

After all, they don’t have a clue and every new day is another adventure.

Beautiful Mornings!

The mornings over the past few days have been crisp, bright and warm!

Letting the animals out is even more of a joy when the weather is so gorgeous. You forget what is going on in the world.

After all, they don’t have a clue and every new day is another adventure.

New beehive all prepared for the new season

Preparing for Season

Spring is gathering momentum, and the spring blossom is beginning to erupt with flower buds bulging and about to explode. The bees are out and about on warm days looking for blossom and sources of water.

I am frantically trying to get prepared. This new hive is ready to hopefully house another colony of bees in the coming months.

I still need to put together loads of frames to replace old wax, but also to allow for expansion and new colonies. Not much time left, but I am sure it will come together and we will be ready.

Honey Bee on crocus gathering pollen in early spring

Bees are Springing into Action

We have had so much rain in the UK, but North Devon, although wet, seems to have got off lighter than some parts of the country!

In the dryer, warmer spells, the bees have managed to get out and collect pollen. They are returning to the hive with their pollen baskets loaded up with mainly orange and yellow pollen at the moment.

If anyone is interested, I have written a small guide on the colour of pollen and the flowers the bees have been visiting in North Devon. See: https://chilcotts.farm/bees/local-pollen-guide/

First goose Egg of the year

First Goose Egg of 2020

Last year (2019) we had our first goose egg of the season on 25th February 2019, this year it was today, 26th February!

It’s amazing how nature’s clock is so accurate. It won’t be long before we have a goose eggs for sale (sorry, still local collection only).

I know what I am having for breakfast this weekend! Goose egg and soldiers….. delicious.

Soft boiled goose egg
Soft boiled goose egg. A meal in itself.
Beehive blown over by #StormCiara

Unhappy Bees!

Well wouldn’t you bee unhappy too if your house has been blown over, and you are exposed to all the elements?

I can see the hives from the house and am always keeping an eye on the them checking all is well.

Everyone had been warning us about #StormCiara, but for some reason I didn’t think about the hives. This morning when I got up, the hives were fine, but the wind was gusting. The BBC website said gusts up to 70 miles per hour.

Mid morning, one of the hives blew over! Spotted as it happened, I shot out to pick the hive up to protect the poor bees from the wind and rain. As I upped the hive and went to get some blocks and straps to to put on the roof and hold it down, it blew over again!

Angry, unhappy bees is an understatement! Poor things. Anyway, I managed to up the hive again (Four stings later – four little bees obviously managed to get into my bee jacket) I weighed it down with bricks and strapped it together. I then strapped all the other hives down too.

Fingers crossed the queen has not been damaged, and all the girls will support her as she starts to lay in the coming weeks.

Strapped down beehive ready for the winds
Strapped down beehive ready for the winds
Witch Hazel flower in the morning frost

Frosty Morning

Quite beautiful this morning. Everything covered in frost glinting in the early morning sunlight. This Witch Hazel looked like a little glimmering jewel.

Antique bottles dug up on a Victorian Farm in North Devon

Buried Treasure

While landscaping our gardens we have dug up many things including old tools, farm implements, water pumps, tyres, bones and scrap metal.

However, one of the most delicate and lovely things we have found are antique bottles.

Varied and obviously old, quite often the writing on them tells a story.

One bottle reads:

WHEELER
LONDON
TRADE MARK
SOFT WHITE HANDS

Another reads:

MRS WIINSLOW’S
SOOTHING SYRUP
CURTIS & PERKINS
PROPRIETORS

My favourite is:

SAMPLE BOTTLE
DR.KILMER’S
SWAMP ROOT
KIDNEY CURE
LONDON.E.C

Geese at dusk with first full moon of 2020 (Wolf Moon)

First New Moon of 2020

Described as a Wolf Moon, the moon certainly had a presence this evening! I don’t think the picture does it justice.