If you’ve never tried to cover crop, it can seem a little daunting, but it shouldn’t be. In this article we will go over a few helpful tips and tricks to help growers begin the cover crop journey or even assist seasoned cover croppers in honing their skills.
Cover cropping is essentially adding a new tool to your orchard toolbox. Like any tool, there are a few suggestions that can help with implementation and success. Be patient as you begin the journey, knowing that you will probably make some mistakes along the way. The cover crop tool can be an effective one for many underlying issues growers face in their orchards, but it’s not a silver bullet and it has to be managed well.
By: Dr. Kelly Kulhanek and Dr. Brandon Hopkins
In the Imperial Valley of Southern California, the average high temperature in July is 107°F. This region of desert stretches south from the Salton Sea all the way down to Mexico. The highest temperature every recorded in the Valley was 121°F, only 13 degrees shy of the world record recorded in nearby Death Valley, CA. Despite these conditions, the Valley is home to several commercial beekeepers keeping thousands of colonies in the Valley during summer. One family, the Ashurst’s, has dominated beekeeping in the area for generations. The Valley’s winters are mild which provides good conditions for wintering colonies outdoors. The summers, however, are tough and require special considerations for bees. Some of these methods are relatively simple, like providing shade for every apiary. More recently, novel use of cold storage facilities have offered both bees and workers a respite from the heat. We spoke with Bryan Ashurst of Ashurst Bee Company about how he uses his cold storage facility in July and August to help his bees beat the heat. .... Read More
Project Apis m. is excited to announce an upcoming webinar expanding on nutrition research presented earlier this year.
This is a one-hour program on July 14th, at 7:00 pm (EST).
The event will feature a presentation by Dr. Vanessa Corby-Harris, of the USDA-ARS Carl Hayden Bee Research Center (Tucson, AZ), who will briefly summarize the results from her last presentation and present *NEW RESULTS* of her Healthy Hives-funded research comparing commercially available nutritional supplements in a large-scale commercial field trial.
To join us for this free event, please register HERE.
An extended Beekeeper and Researcher Q&A will follow the presentation. To read Dr. Corby-Harris's answers to commonly asked bee nutrition questions and access the previous event recording, you can go HERE.
We invite you to download a copy of the event flyer, and share this FREE event with friends!
Contact Grace at Grace@ProjectApism.org with any questions. To be notified when a recording becomes available, please sign up for updates from Project Apis m.
We hope to see you soon!
Images: Sampling colonies at the North Dakota field site in the late summer of 2021
Beekeepers know that good nutrition ensures the overall health of their bees and that it can also help buffer other health challenges. But we often hear the question “what is considered ‘good’ nutrition, and how can beekeepers ensure that their bees have access to it?”
New research, informed by beekeepers and funded through PAm as part of the Healthy Hives initiative, was undertaken by Dr. Vanessa Corby-Harris of the USDA-ARS Carl Hayden Bee Research center in Tucson, Arizona. This research was designed to help beekeepers decide if, and how, to invest in protein supplements for their bees.
Preliminary results of this research were recently presented by Dr. Vanessa Corby-Harris, and collaborating commercial beekeeper Blake Shook, in a webinar for beekeepers.
Having successfully defended his thesis and graduated, Dr. McMenamin is now a postdoctoral researcher at the USDA-ARS Honey bee breeding, genetics, and physiology lab in Baton Rouge, and funded by the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) through an interagency agreement between the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the USDA. His publications include describing the role of heat shock proteins in antiviral defense in honey bees, and provides a target for potential antiviral treatments or breeding programs(1). We had a chance to catch up with him about his experience as a PAm-Costco Scholar, and working with the beekeeping community.
Project Apis m. is proud to announce the 2022 selection of PAm-Costco Scholars!
The highly competitive PAm-Costco USA Scholarships are awarded to outstanding scholars who are dedicated to making an impact on honey bee health and the sustainability of beekeeping throughout their careers.
PAm-Costco scholars demonstrate academic excellence, innovation, scientific aptitude, communication skills, and a commitment to honey bees and beekeepers.
The students who receive this PhD Fellowship award bring new energy, ideas, and expertise to the fold of scientists pushing the edges of bee health research across the globe. This award is an investment in the next generation of leaders to innovate and support beekeepers and pollinators.
We commend all of our applicants, and give our heartfelt congratulations the Awardees!
Project Apis m. is currently accepting scholarship applications from student studying honey bee health in Canada!
Applications will be accepted until midnight (EST), July 1st, 2022.
Learn more about the PAm-Costco Scholarships and past PAm-Costco Scholars at: ProjectApism.org/PAm-Costco-Scholars
Sacramento, California, June 1, 2022 – For Immediate Release
Seeds for Bees Application Open Enrollment Launched
The Seeds for Bees program open enrollment launched in California today and is open for three months until August 31st. This year’s goal is to plant 15,000 acres of cover crop in what growers and beekeepers are saying is one of the most challenging years in recent memory. “Last year was tough, this year is even tougher,” said Rory Crowley, Project Apis m.’s Director of Habitat Programs. “In every way possible, growers and beekeepers are being pressed to their limits, and that is why cover crop is so important. That is why Seeds for Bees is so important.” Crowley said that the drought and economic pressures actually demands more cover crop being planted.
You may have heard the statement “all beekeeping is local”. This means that, depending on where you keep bees, your beekeeping actions for a particular month could be drastically different than what is appropriate for beekeepers located elsewhere! During April, some beekeepers might be busy with tasks like installing packages and raising queens, while others might be using the mild days to crack lids on their colonies even while there’s snow on the ground. Regardless of what other tasks you are trying to accomplish this April, we hope you will find time to fill out our annual Honey Bee Colony Loss and Management Survey!
TAKE SURVEY HERE