Let's look at my progress because that is my favorite hobby - LOOK AT ME! LOOK AT ME!
Obviously. Just look at this blog.
Anyway, so, two months ago my hive looked like this:
|I'm sorry, lady, but that looks a lot like firewood to me.|
|Stop taking pictures with the camera on your phone.|
|I feel like moving in there right now and putting magnets on the fridge.|
And then do you know what I did? Yeah, I totally blanked on actually ordering the bees and queen.
I was out visiting a friend in the mountains yesterday and she was all, "So when are you getting your bees?" and I was all, "What?"
And then realized, in sort of a mental frenzy, that while I had certainly done every other little thing in the process of becoming the neighborhood bee psycho, I had actually neglected to order bees.
Wow. This is going to go well.
So now, after a morning of brief Googling, an audible at the line and an extremely pleasant and encouraging call to a local bee yard, I've now ordered my bees and, in keeping my promise to educate you as to what the hell I'm talking about with this new hobby of mine, let me explain.
See, there are a lot of steps in this beekeeping process. Firstly, one must decide that one wants a lot of stinging insects in one's backyard and within pointy range of one's allergic husband. After that, and after stockpiling Epi pens throughout the property, one must procure the hive bits (check!), build the hive (check!), paint the hive (check!), source the permit info if one is being law-abiding for once in their god damned lives (check!) and find a place in the yard for the hive (check!).
Oh. And one must get bees in order to have a beehive that produces honey. Right.
So, once again, there are all these options.
WHY ARE THERE ALWAYS SO MANY OPTIONS?
I like simplicity, friends. I like, "Here is our one model of dishwasher, ma'am, take it or leave it. Oh, and you won't be needing that hand-truck." (I love hand-trucks. I feel so powerful and efficient wheeling heavy appliances around on them. I take one everywhere.)(Not really.)
And with the bees, there are again so many options, none of which include the use of a hand-truck, but all of which involve bringing thousands of pointy bugs onto one's property en mass and, in my case, doing so with limited experience for managing such a scenario.
Reassuring isn't it? Bubba thinks so.
So the options I was mulling, which is the excuse I'm going to use for why it's taken me so long to get my act together, were:
Option 1: Order a package of bees and a marked queen from somewhere in the Internet World to have shipped to my local post office where the vibrating package could scare the crap out of our local civil servants. (Hmmm...wouldn't it be better to get them nearby?)
Option 2: Find a local source for bees and a marked queen and then figure out how to get them to my house. (Hmmm...that sounds like a lot of mucking about.)
Option 3: Take a split off of one of the hives at work and figure out how to get the split to my house (I imagine "Hauling open-air in a speeding Prius" is not a recommended transportation method) and then figure out how to get a queen and then install the queen without getting her killed. (Hmmm...that sounds vaguely death-defying.)
Option 4: Capture a swarm. (Hmmm...that sounds actually death-defying.)
In the end I went with Option 2 thanks to a Google search for "package bees california" that landed me on a local site and in touch with a lovely gal who, in the friendliest of manners, arranged to exchange my credit card number for 4,000 of their local bees and a marked queen to be delivered to my door at the beginning of April.
And the options were extremely limited at that point, which I loved.
How many packages do you want? One.
When do you want it to show up - How about April 7th? OK.
Bless their hearts, that was simple.
Oh, and there will be lengthy instructions for all steps between Receiving Your Bees to Having a Happy Hive included with the bees, so I think I'm all set.
Now, though, I must set this rig up in the backyard and call over the local authorities to check it out for the purposes of
Sadly, there are a LOT of options for that little activity. Yay.