A Year in the Beeyard
(A Houston Beekeeper’s Calendar)

January

Check colony stores of honey and feed sugar syrup if necessary (2:1)
Check for dead, failing colonies
Order new equipment
Repair damaged equipment and construct new equipment
Make sure fresh water is available for bees
Pay HBA dues

February

Inspect colonies for stores
Inspect colonies to make sure they are queenright.
Inspect colonies for diseases and mites
Put in grease patties/terra-patties
Put in Apistan strips
Put in Menthol
Feed Fumidil-B
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

March

Inspect colonies for congestion
Inspect to make sure they are queenright
Check colonies for diseases or mites
Check colony for healthy brood pattern
Check colony for queen cells
Prepare for swarming
Divide colonies or requeen. Unite weak colonies
Remove all drugs/pesticides at least four weeks before honey flow
Prepare honey supers for honey flow
Put out swarm traps with pheromone lures
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

April

Install packages and feed new colonies
Inspect colonies for congestion, stores, queenright, diseases, mites, brood pattern and queen cells
Watch for swarming
Install queen excluders
Add supers for Spring honey flow
Remove reducers from hive entrances

May

Inspect colonies for congestion, stores, queenright, diseases and mites
Add supers as necessary for Spring honey flow
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

June

Inspect colonies for congestion, stores, queenright, diseases and mites
Add supers as necessary for Spring honey flow
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

July

Inspect colonies for congestion, stores, queenright, diseases and mites
Remove and process honey
Remove queen excluders
Reduce entrances to discourage robbing
Put in grease patties/Terra-patties, Apistan strips and menthol
Requeen if planned
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

August

Inspect colonies for congestion, stores, queenright, diseases and mites
Requeen if necessary or planned
Feed Fumidil-B and dust with Terramycin if Terra-patties are not used
Package all hive products and sell
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

September

Inspect colonies for congestion, stores, queenright, diseases and mites
Requeen if necessary or planned
Prepare honey supers for Fall honey flow
Remove all drugs/pesticides at least four weeks before honey flow
Install queen excluders
Add supers for Fall honey flow
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

October

Add supers as necessary for Fall honey flow
Requeen if necessary or planned
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

November

Inspect colonies for stores, queenright, diseases and mites
Remove and process honey
Remove queen excluders
Reduce entrances for winter
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

December

Check colony stores, feed sugar syrup if necessary (2:1)
Order packages and queens for desired delivery date
Order new equipment for next year
Make sure fresh water is available for bees

Adapted, with permission, from Brushy Mountain Bee Farm, Inc.