Did you know that there is a type of wood called “cucumber”? I didn’t. It’s a wild magnolia and it”s frequently sold as yellow poplar, an altogether different tree species. A beekeeper mentioned it during Pete’s speech at the 2010 Empire State Honey Producers Association conference. Pete Sieling, founder ofÂ Garreson Publishing, talked about making beehives-what types of woods to use, different joint types, helpful tools, it was quite interesting. I learned things like: the target moisture content when drying wood is 6 – 8%, but wood used for beehives should be higher: 10-12%. I discovered that one board foot of lumber comes in many shapes and thicknesses, but it’s always 144 cubic inches.
After his talk, we went to sessions about care and processing of beeswax, led by Mike Griggs and a slide presentation of different species of bees by Peter Borst. I doodled the types of bees â€“ squash, miner, leaf cutter, sweat, honey, mason, bumble, plasterer, and carpenter, shown aboveâ€“ and I learned there are bee flies that look like bees, but arenâ€™t.
ESHPA has periodic meetings for New York honey producers, and is open to anyone interested in beekeeping. They were formed to help NYS beekeepers produce and market their honey, lobby for trade protections, and connect beekeepers. The fall conference was held in November 2010, in Syracuse, NY. Garreson Publishing sells a line of beehive plans, including Beehive Construction, Nuc Hive Construction, Making the Eight Frame Hive, andÂ Make a Window Mounted Observation Hive.