Sunday, 25 July 2010



Here are some pictures from my weekly inspection of my bees.  At the moment I have two hives, one really strong colony and one very small colony which I have persevered with for two seasons but to no avail.  My bee keeping friend Tony gave me a virgin queen last week to re-queen this weak colony but as yet she hasn’t started to lay yet.  She needs to go on her nuptial flight with some of the boys (drones) to be fertilised, then hopefully she should start laying eggs.  The other hive (the really strong one) is doing really well.  At the moment I have two brood boxes on (the boxes where the eggs are laid and the young bees are reared) and 3 supers (the boxes where the honey is stored).  There are a LOT  of bees in this hive, literally thousands and luckily they are evenly tempered and don’t get too narky whilst I am looking through them.

This first picture is a frame of uncapped honey which is probably still being processed by the bees.


The next picture is of capped honey, sealed by beeswax.  This is ok to take off but I won’t be doing that for a few more weeks yet.  Each super if full normally holds about 20 pounds of honey.


The next picture is of the bottom brood box where most of the bees are, you can only see a fraction of the bees.


I have another hive of bees in the garden as well but these are Tony’s.

A chap who keeps a lot of bees locally is reducing the number of hives he keeps due to ill health and is selling them at a very reasonable price - £160 for a full colony of bees.  I have ordered two of these to try and increase my stock as usually I would have had a swarm by now but none have been forth coming.  The hives should be available middle of August.


Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Cake vicar?

These are a fun knit – easy, quick and uses minimal yarn - Cupcakes by Alison Hogg


Now off to google more cake patterns – makes you feel hungry doesn’t it?

Monday, 19 July 2010

Summer colour

I haven’t been blogging lately as this time of year is really hectic for us.  The gorgeous summer weather we have been having lately has had a terrific effect on the garden with everything bursting forth with growth but It has been a hard job keeping everything watered.  This year I have been using an organic peat free compost which has a lovely texture but seems to dry out really quickly.  At them moment I am growing a variety of tomato called Garden Pearl which has a tumbling type growth ideal for hanging baskets and tubs, but the tubs are drying out really quickly even with watering them twice a day so I went to the local garden centre to buy those plastic terracotta coloured saucer type dishes you put under the pots but was appalled at the price of them.  On looking round for an alternative I spied some brightly coloured trays that were being sold as cat litter trays.  Not only are these ideal for my tubs and have a huge capacity but I can use them for putting small pots of seedling in for easy watering and they were cheaper too!



On the yarn front I have been crocheting some covers for boring plastic coat hangers.  I used the pattern Granny Hangers from Sarah London.  I love how they have turned out.

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Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Norfolk Broads Holiday

Last week we managed to grab a few days away on one of our own hire boats.  We chose Royall Oak as this is our favourite boat.  The weather was scorching and couldn’t be better. This was Raven’s first holiday afloat as Tillie is an old ‘sea dog’ already!  I hope you like the pictures.

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                 Royall Oak moored at Coltishall                                 Raven cooling off in the long grass

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                    Another boat of our fleet Royall Commander 2                      Approaching Horning

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            Tillie & Raven looking out over Ludham marshes                                   Nigel sailing is gun punt ‘Shoveler’

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A couple of examples of Norfolk drainage mills

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                                    Approaching Barton Broad                                          Nigel relaxing at Barton Staithe

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                           Exploring narrower waterways in Shoveler                              Hunsett Mill on the River Ant

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               A boat ‘shooting’ the very low Potter Heigham Bridge                                Tillie & Raven in Shoveler

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                                  Raven hoping to enjoy a pub lunch                              The Pleasure Boat Inn garden at Hickling

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                                             Aboard Shoveler again                   Overlooking Herbert Woods Boatyard Potter Heigham at sunset

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                                           The Norfolk Wherry ‘Albion’                                    Walking near South Walsham marshes

For a more detailed write up, Nigel has blogged about our holiday from the perspective of his boat ‘Shoveler’ over on the Royalls Boatyard Blog