What a whirlwind last 5 days. Son 2 and family returned from their RV trip and spent about 24 hours with us, including a birthday party for two of their daughters, a “bonfire” (not very big), and a hive inspection. It looks like maybe two hives are queenright, frames shifted to help population and add brood and queen cells to the other two. If they don’t make their own queen, I will have to seek out a local source. We have a huge beekeepers association, and at least a couple of them raise queens for sale.
Later the night they arrived, Son 1 arrived for his delayed birthday weekend and our time with him was wonderful. Lots of good food, hikes and walks, enjoying his presence. He got to kayak with a friend, mountain bike ride all three days, and do some stone masonry work on the patio which is now finished from the house outward. The last 5 or 6 feet still need some leveling and puzzle placing some smaller rocks to finish it out. Then he and I will move the remaining small rocks to the inside edge of the stone wall and we will order soil and mulch to fill the garden. Since Huck’s coop, the old chicken tractor that blew over about a year ago, was sitting on a cedar post raft on flat stones, he disassembled the raft and moved those stones over to fill in spaces. That leave the broken frame to be disassembled, the hardware cloth saved and the rotting wood put in the burn pile once the screws and staples are removed. We don’t want them in the grass where they might end up in a mower or tractor tire.
He was driven to the bus back to the train at 5 this morning, but will return to help his brother make repairs on the roof of the RV next weekend if the materials arrive by then.
The plum tree is producing a small amount of fruit for the first time. The little plums are delicious. I may save the remaining ones as the last ones ripen to make a small batch of plum jam.
When we returned from a late afternoon walk, there were two big tractors with hay mowers taking down the hay. I guess tomorrow they will tedder, rake, and bale it. It isn’t the latest they have done it, but approaching it. I’m glad it is down. I like watching it blow, but once it dries and turns golden, it isn’t long before it falls over and ceases being useful.