Canola?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by wyvern, Apr 12, 2013.

  1. wyvern

    wyvern New Member

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    I have a large field of canola blooming right now about a 1/2 mile from my three small hives. Will the canola honey crystallize in the spring and summer? i want them to build up and have stores for the summer dearth. Just wondering if it will be usable for them.
     

  2. Ray

    Ray Member

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    Great link, PerryBee:thumbsup:
     
  3. Barbarian

    Barbarian New Member

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    Some further info

    Non-GM Oil Seed Rape is widely grown in the UK as a Spring flowering crop.
    Quite a few beeks take hives to the crop and put them at the field margins.
    The bees build up quickly and swarming can be a problem.
    In the right conditions, a good honey crop is possible.
    Because the honey granulates readily it is not suitable as comb food source for the bees.
    After (early) extraction, the honey is often left to granulate in pails. It sets like a brick.
    The set honey can be warmed to re-liquify. This liquified honey is much slower to granulate and can be jarred or blended.

    Anecdotal chat says that the bees are nasty when back from the OSR and the sting carries extra wallop.

    The farmers are said to like bees on the crop...... better, more even heavier set and sharper cut off to crop set.

    Mustard (Ajaz in India) is related to OSR.
     
  4. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Perry, Where do you find the time to be so active on this forum and still find the time to keep your finger on the pulse of so many other interesting sites? :thumbsup:
     
  5. larry tate

    larry tate New Member

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    Thanks so much Perry! Just last night we got a call wanting us to move hives to 100 acres of blooming Canola. What are any thoughts on using for winter feed for bees?
     
  6. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    From what I have been able to determine is honey bees love Canola. "Explode" is the term i have read more than once. Given it's propensity to set up so quickly though, I would question its suitability as a winter source of feed. Would the bees be able to utilize it well?
    IMHO, I would consider moving them into Canola, have them grow (and pocket the pollination fees) and then move them to a different area where they could be left to harvest winter stores more suitable for their own needs.
     
  7. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Honey has been granulating for eons.
    Bees have been thriving for eons.

    That leads me to believe the bees either thrive on granulated honey or have a means to liquefy it. I would think canola honey would be fine for wintering in NC, but have no actual experience with it.
     
  8. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Good point Iddee. It seems to me that I have read that honey that granulates quickly (even Goldenrod) is not the best for overwintering bees on?
     
  9. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    And I have read of many, many beeks who harvest in July and leave the fall honey for wintering the bees.
     
  10. wyvern

    wyvern New Member

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    I think I will harvest in July, if there is any left, like Idee said and hope for the best.
     
  11. Zulu

    Zulu Member

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    They survive on sugar boards, fondant,and even granulated sugar, so why not solid honey they made??
     
  12. wyvern

    wyvern New Member

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    I really don't figure there will be enough to worry with in July. Last year they bearly had enough to make it through the winter. Unless there is a great year, I just want them to continue to survive! This is their third year.
     
  13. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Don't be such a "minimalist". Set your hopes high, but be happy with whatever you get. :razz:
     
  14. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    "It seems to me that I have read that honey that granulates quickly (even Goldenrod) is not the best for overwintering bees on?"

    perry goldenrod is what my bees primarily winter on....:grin:
     
  15. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    the bees will uncap and suck the sugars that have stayed liquid and only suck and dissolve the granules that are left if needed for food. At times the bees hall them out of the hive like they will granulated sugar when there is a flow on.