Plant Murderer

I’m a future plant killer. The plants are still alive, but their lives are jeopardized. The bunny instigated my crime. I had two rows of peas, approaching 4 inches in height, beautifully beginning their upwards climb, when an herbivore of an unknown identity snipped the pea shoots short. I wept. Then I built a fence and staked it into the ground, hoping to rabbit (or deer) proof my precious vegetable patch.

As consolation, I also planted my tomato, pepper, and melon seedlings. After all, it’s almost May and in May we have a no frost date. However, today has been cool and tomorrow looks chilly. My poor little summer-loving seedlings may not survive, because I desperately wanted plants in my garden.
For the past four weeks, I have owned a hive of bees. They are a fascinating family of workers. I love watching them hover and land on the opening of the hive, but I fear for them too. Saturday, I inspected the hive and found more tall, oval cells than I care. These cells, I discovered nurture a larval drone, the male bee. In the bee world, men provide moral and mating for the queen bee, but little else. The sterile female workers run the hive, make the honey, tend the young and guard the home. The solitary queen bee’s responsibility is to lay eggs, lots of eggs, preferably worker eggs. After seeing the large number of drone cells, I began reading about bee eggs and larva. I believe my queen is laying drones because she is working with material from a hive that collapsed. As a last desperate attempt to save the hive, the sterile workers will lay eggs, but all of their eggs are drones. Thus, the comb my queen is working on is filled iwth cells perfect for laying drones – not workers. (Drones eggs are laid in cells of a slightly different shape than worker.) Hopefully, Queen Meli will lay enough female eggs to have a work force sufficient for this summer’s nectar flow!

About beewhisper

Christian, Mama, Wife, Gardener, Beekeeper
This entry was posted in Bee-ing Frugal, Pollen Makers. Bookmark the permalink.

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