WET WINDY WEST.IRELAND.sometimes warm and mild

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself Here' started by antonius, Jul 31, 2017.

  1. 9anda1f

    9anda1f Administrator Staff Member

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    Great idea ... marks out your plan and holds the mulch in place!
     
  2. antonius

    antonius Member

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    Been a muddled and odd couple of past months,---was just about to start grumbling and whining about the past couple of weeks ---but i have just watched the greening of the desert youtube clips ,and just listening to how Alba kept her head up and stayed true to course , her achievement is humbling---sometimes the silly little shitty patches that we sometimes go through ---in my cozy western european life just pale away---and can hardly be compared---gave me so much to be gratefull for. Well now on my 3rd new ---old --pc and have temporly lost the technology to load up pics ---until i have a donated i4 phone sorted , but managed to keep planting out seedlings and dealing with a few rats and voles eating my germinating seeds and saplings , in each stack of 2 tires i have about 8 milk carton seed pots ,a piece of bird mesh on top held down by a couple of cut out tire sidewalls---this stops the little birds eating the organic slug pellets and getting into the rat traps i have spaced around in some of them. Also in heavy downpours i was able to lay a sheet of clear plastic over the mesh and under the sidewalls to hold it down ---this stopped some of the over watering and kept temps up a bit as well at the time.Got some burr oak , black hybrid walnut , pecan , buart hybrid walnuts ,coming up and lots of hazel ,chestnut, ginko and sweet oaks germinating---waiting for lots more varieties to start showing
     
  3. 9anda1f

    9anda1f Administrator Staff Member

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    You are so right about our "first world problems".
    Spring has sprung ... enjoy!
     
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  4. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    How did you get on with your bee hive?
     
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  5. antonius

    antonius Member

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    no luck with any bees yet , i have just placed some liquid attractant sprayed onto cotton wool--friend had some spare ---inside the hive ---but he had no spare bees to offer---its becoming a worry as although people are keeping bees about 2 miles from me there are none yet to be spotted around my place and a few keepers i have met are all reporting a scarcity in swarms and falling numbers of hives. But this is not just a climate change or farming practices or pesticides at play , its also fewer people living in rural areas who practice rural traditions and around our area just a slow decline in people willing to live in it. My piggy bank is currently mothballed ,so i cant purchase a nuc of black bees either, and we are now in june so swarms will be less likely as well
     
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  6. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    oh, that is disappointing. I was looking forward to hearing how great it was going.
    Did your friend say what was on the cotton wool? Its probably something like Lemon grass oil.
    I wish our native bees were the sort i coud put in a box and look after but they arent and all I can do is try to plant out as many native species as I can to try to give them something to forage on.
    In some ways, a slow decline in people can bring about a more diverse eco system due to lack of interference.
    My piggybank has a lock on it at the moment too.
     
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  7. antonius

    antonius Member

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    Touchdown-----just arrived a few hours ago at home ---back from a weeks holiday break in sunny algarve,-----and our weather here at home was glorious ----which must have set off some bee swarming ---went to checkout a low buzzing noise---and theres bees in the hive ---large dark coloured ones---with plenty of activity --- one coming in and one leaving on a continual rota---so nearly a year later almost to the date ---bees have moved in.
     
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  8. 9anda1f

    9anda1f Administrator Staff Member

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    Tthat's great Antonius, post a photo of the bees if you get a chance.
     
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  9. antonius

    antonius Member

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    hello, its been grand weather here for the past 5 weeks , for us at least ,anything over 12 degrees C and only the odd rainfall ---is a summer by our terms , of course its been even better than that over a few days , and lots of bee activity ---i cant get a good close up picture of them ---the hive is 14 feet or so above in the tree---been able to set up a spotter scope some distance away so i could focus in , onto the top entrance hole ---and identify the bees as very dark , furry and with very faint yellow bands---but with out a positive dna test to absolutly state these are 95 to 100 percent irish black bees ---i am going to say they are dark bees living on my place in ireland . Seems quite a few keepers in the early 20th century bought in dark european hives ,and combined with later italian imports and buckfasts ---we would now have feral hives with mixed dna---fortunately our weather has been selectively breeding only those that can adapt to it for us .Went round to a local keeper ---2 kms away --and had a look at his bees ---all are honey bee types---lots more yellow banding --although he has lost a few hives to swarming away --mostly they move into several vacant hives he keeps nearby---he has a strict feeding regime of sugar syrup to get the queen laying and brood build up---of course he valiantly offered to remove my swarm ---followed up by they must be some of his that recently swarmed and left---oh how we laughed at these two statements---although i think he might have been a bit serious.A plus side was he has planted up some manuka and has brought on enough of it to establish a hedge , with more cuttings and seedlings coming along---onto the bee lure i used ---i have no idea what it was ---it was a pale blue fluid --which i dropped onto cotton wool ---but that was done a month or more before the swarm moved in . On the use on lemon grass oil as a lure ---its more hit and miss from what i have read ---repels some bees and attracts others only temporary---on the same hive swarm ----many keepers dont use any swarm lure at all---so i am starting to doubt its effectiveness.---
     
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  10. antonius

    antonius Member

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    heres one i have never gotten as far with before, its a jarrah, been able to germinate them but they usually conk out after about 6 leaves are up, its up on a mound/ditch so free draining soil, and still growing
     
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  11. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    good to hear about some successes there! :)
     
  12. antonius

    antonius Member

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    trying to get a photo up ,sorry just wont work and i cant work out why not right now
     
  13. antonius

    antonius Member

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    and now 99.jpg
     
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  14. antonius

    antonius Member

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    Still trying to devise a way to take picture of the bee hive entrance ---a close up , my improvised stick method failed and nearly gave my little girl a nervous twitch condition ---as it was her phone i had sticky taped to the end of it ---and it fell twice ---she luckily has good eye to hand co ordination --and saved the day.So i now have to make something better --as its now going to be my phone used ---its much cheaper option than having to pacify her and replace , and mines 2nd or 3rd --might be 4th hand me down . About harvesting honey from this hive ---i wont be ---not enough experience and to much risk to the hive, i will have to build another 2 hives with better removable sections and hopefully they will be filled with a swarm(s) , as for eating local honey from the keepers around me ---i have stopped---so honey is off my diet ---every one keeping around my area is feeding sugar and paste plus treating routinely for mites and other problems---they have adopted the methods of keeping dairy cattle around here to their bees.
     
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  15. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    good luck! i think in many countries all bee keepers are supposed to be registered and inspected to help with the spread of diseases. i'm not sure what is up with your country. :) hope it will all be well.

    if you can find some of the orange/yellow/reddish mix of cosmos those provide a great forage crop for bees in the later part of the summer. they are an annual. very easy to grow and get tons of flowers. i try to grow some each year but skipped a few years until this year and i'm glad i put some back in so i could watch the many different kinds of bees that visit them. plus it renewed my seed supply. they keep going right up until the frost takes them out here. i'm not sure what they would do in a more temperate climate. if you plant them sometime let me know. :)
     
  16. antonius

    antonius Member

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    i am not a beekeeper really , i built a habitat for bees based on reading what wild bees seem to like ---according to us mammals that is---some of our species have done a lot of careful and considerate observation about this and published their findings---these are not really about maximising honey production or nucs and queens---just about trying to provide habitat and locations for them---i am fortunate that i live close to a bog land ,which is covered in heather and orchid and i have a lot of trees around covered in ivy .
     
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  17. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    i'd forgotten you were talking wild bees. sorry! i'm so glad you have done what you've done. we have had one swarm go through here and it was a honey bee swarm. i'm sure someone would have loved to have come and got it when it happened, but it wasn't here long enough to stick. good thing too as it was in the shed i was working on at the time. they inspected it and rejected it within a few hours.

    i have wild bee habitat only type of things here. no hollow logs or hives set up to attract or hold them. we have a lot of piles of things though which they will sometimes use for their nesting or ground nests to go under some of the flat pieces of wood i leave on the ground (to rot but also to keep weeds down :) ).

    some year perhaps i will try some bee hotels, but i can't do that at the moment. i'm thinking that i would likely just end up with either hornets/wasps/yellow jackets (which we already have plenty of) or honey bees. i would like to figure out more about attracting and having the bumblebees, the big ones we get are around but not very many in number so i would be happy to give them more of a home space as we do have plenty of space out on the other side of the ditch i can use and it is far away from the house and rarely gets disturbed. hmm... :)
     
  18. antonius

    antonius Member

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    tried many times to get camptotheca acuminata seeds to germinate ,must have gone through a handfull of seeds by now and had given up , this started growing and has not stopped, had it mis labeled as well---which did nt help ,its planted outside ---and its an outside bet that it wont make the cold weather---but it germinated outdoors ---so perhaps it can WP_20191013_12_58_16_Pro1.jpg
     
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  19. antonius

    antonius Member

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    i had a wander round the sitka spruce plantation behind me---its been put on notice for some roads to be laid down in it ---thinning procedure to be carried out--at the moment though ---full of mushrooms fruiting and fungi mats just below the leaf/needle litter--- in and around the blocks of trees planted near my property/fence line. Before this was planted up the fields near to me were fallow and although used for rough grazing were not artificially fertilized , the fields further out were on easier ground ,and were sprinkled with it for many years up until it was all planted---and they have far less and very sparse scatterings WP_20191013_13_04_09_Pro_LI9999.jpg
     

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  20. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    are you getting settled in for winter there? :)
     

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