Bee Keeping


Apiary 2023 scaledSurviving winter - so far so good!

We had significant hive losses during the winter of 2021 . . . all most 90% of our colonies died!

In 2022 we had a 90% survival rate. A fantastic turnaround we own to some good information we were given regarding the use of moisture boards, insulation and feeding the STF bees a healthy amount of high fructose corn syrup.

As a result, in 2022, 17 of the 19 colonies we started with in the fall survived the winter. And most we strong enough to use the OTS process to split.

We took off 108 gallons of honey (about 2250 pounds) by early summer and built the apiary up to 35 colonies.

We gave several colonies to bee keeper friends, combined a few and entered the winter of 2022/2023 with 25 healthy hives.

Having medicated for mites in August and fed these wintering colonies through November, we’re hoping at another good season in 2023.

When you have a moment check out our Facebook page and YouTube channel to see what we did to put our hives to bed for the winter this year. Having been fitted with moisture boards and insulation to help manage hive moisture levels, our hives are looking quite snug all wrapped up for the winter. 

We know there's a fair amount of luck involved...bees can be fragile and winters can be difficult. But as it is in many situations you can improve your odds with some careful and consistent attention to your hives.

We’re especially thankful for the support of some very knowledgeable folks including:IMG 20180726 121000

  • Chuck Daily, Patty Jones  and all the members of the West Central Indiana Bee Club. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Find your local club here:
  • And of course for Melvin Disselkoen Author of the book OTS Queen Rearing that has taught us so much about growing our apiary. Find out more .at

We’ve enjoyed a number of successful OTS splits over the past couple of years we are once again enjoying a full apiary as we continue to grow in our ability to perform on the Spot queen rearing. You've probably seen some of our work to this end on our Facebook page or YouTube channel and we'll post more on this as we continue to learn...but our initial reaction is that it's good for our apiary and good for the bees that call Springboro Tree Farms home