By Fred Davis, beekeeper of the honeybees that live on the roof the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts.
The long, cold winter and the wet, cool spring have had an impact on the health of the hives. It has taken the bees until July to build back up to full force, so we expect a late harvest this year. With so many wet days this summer to boot — which is in total contrast to the long, hot and dry summer we experienced in southwest Ontario last year — it's been pretty challenging to encourage the bee population to grow to its full strength.
I fed sugar water solution to them in mid-June, which is very unusual. Two hives still do not have honey supers on. I have kept them off because if you give the bees too much room to move around, the queen will not lay her eggs in an efficient manner. I hope to put them on the weekend of July 20, which should give them enough time to produce before the long weekend in September.
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Sara Fulgoni in the COC production of Bluebeard's Castle. Photo: Michael Cooper © 2001