On April 27, 2020, we cleaned up the double-walled Long Langstroth and gave it a fresh coat of paint on the box and its metal roof. I picked up a nuc from Mary Bouma late that afternoon, but it was raining pretty steadily by the time I got home. I left the bees in their nuc until morning, which dawned nice and sunny. I placed them in their new home and they oriented to their hive, then took off to explore all the delicious forage nearby. They soon had found my weeping cherry and all the dandelions and purple dead nettle, among other flowers blooming profusely on my property.
On May 5, 2020 I did discover the commercial beekeeper had placed hives on the piece of property a mile from me. However, he did not put any in the gravel pit adjacent to my property. I am not sure why he appeared so early, perhaps his pollination contracts got cancelled. At any rate, I was encouraged that there were no hives in the gravel pit, and I am hopeful my one hive can hold its own with the competition a little further away. I will decide at a later date whether to start a second hive and put it closer to the gravel pit, which is further from the other hives, just to see if it makes a difference. Stay tuned.