We are starting to get used to the challenges of keeping bees in the volatile weather of the high plains. We purchased 4 new bee packages in the spring and two of them either swarmed or combined with another hive. We still call it a win. The two existing hives were doing so well we were able to get 7 jars of honey their first year! It was much lighter in color and taste but it was nice to see how productive they were.
Since this is the bees first winter we wanted to give them a little extra help. We found a recipe online for a fondant you can make for bees for over wintering them. Fondant is preferred over sugar water as it keeps the moisture level down inside the hive. Moisture mixed with cold weather equals frostbite. Fondant is made out of sugar, water and a little apple cider vinegar for probiotics. You cook it just as you would cook candy, pouring it onto trays of parchment paper once it reaches the correct temperature. Once hardened you lay the slabs on top of the frames inside the beehive.
You can watch us deliver the fondant on the farm’s YouTube Channel: