We took a stroll through our hopyard this morning and look at what we found!
The first bines of the season are emerging from the soil. They’re so tiny, about the size of a bottle cap, we almost didn’t see them.
When we last checked in with the Rogue Farms honeybees, they were shipping out south to spend the winter pollinating an almond orchard near Tracy, California.
Much to our surprise, their story caught the attention of the Oregon Beer Growler, which wanted to know why we’d go to so much trouble for our bees.
Here’s what they discovered.
“The journey across state lines and back again may sound like one big endeavor for a bunch of bees, but their contribution to the flavor of beer and the health of the environment in general is truly greater than their physical size.” -Oregon Beer Growler.
Click on the image to read the February issue online and see what’s happening in Oregon’s beer scene. Then head to page 18 to read about our honeybees.
At Rogue Farms we’re used to getting up before the sun. But today began especially early, as we loaded up our 7,140,289 honeybees for the start of their California vacation.
Our bees will spend the next couple of months pollinating an almond orchard near Tracy, California. That’s a 600-mile drive to the south, and an early start was necessary because we want to arrive by tonight. The less time on the road, the less stress on our honeybees.
Autumn is one of the busiest times of year for the beekeeper at Rogue Farms.
There’s no more wild sources of nectar and pollen for our honeybees to forage and soon it will be too cold for them to leave the hive. So in the next few weeks our beekeeper has 7,140,289 mouths to feed, medicate and shelter before winter arrives.
The bees took care of us this spring and summer by pollinating our crops and making the honey we used in our kolsch, mead, braggot and sodas. Now it’s our turn to take care of them.
Every July we make plans for the harvest season at Rogue Farms.
The Risk™ malting barley harvest in Tygh Valley kicks things off mid-month, followed by our seven varieties of hops at our farm in Independence in August. But you know what they say about making plans.
This year, Mother Nature and the 7,140,289 Rogue Farms honeybees decided it was time to shake things up.
This is the greatest time of year to be a Rogue Farms honeybee.
We’re in the middle of the summer nectar flow, when gazillions of wildflowers, blackberry flowers and clover fill the fields surrounding our farm.
It’s the honeybee’s version of an all you can eat for free buffet. But for our bees, that’s not good enough.
We can’t think of a prettier place to be than spring time in a cherry orchard.
Stroll among the trees and feel the orchards glow in soft hues of white and pink. A gentle breeze sends petals drifting lazily through the air.
Stand still for a moment and take in the quiet. Because, if you listen very carefully, you’ll hear a slight buzz.
That’s the sound of our Rogue Farms honeybees.
The blossoming of the cherry orchards marks the beginning of the spring nectar flow, a time of year when the Wigrich Appellation offers an amazing buffet of flowers for our honeybees. As the cherries fade away, the pears will come into bloom, to be followed by the apple trees. Thousands of wildflowers dot the landscape.
All a bee has to do is fly off in any direction and it will soon find a nice source of nectar and pollen. But they seem to take a shine to cherry blossoms.
We started keeping honeybees because we wanted to create another ingredient to our proprietary palate of flavors of known origin. Because nothing says terroir quite like honey.
From spring until the end of summer our 7,140,289 honeybees will sample all the flavors of the Wigrich Appellation including; hazelnuts, our Dream Pumpkins, our jalapeños, our marionberries, cherries, apples, wild blackberries, clover, and a gazillion other wild flowers.
Rogue Farms Wildflower honey is truly a taste of place.
You can try putting cherry blossoms in your beer, or you could let our honeybees do it for you. This year’s crop of Rogue Farms honey will be put to good use by John Maier as he crafts future batches of 19 Original Colonies Mead, Honey Kolsch and Marionberry Braggot.
Spring has arrived at Rogue Farms! Come join us for another season of growing beer, spirits and honey.
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