Saturday, December 3, 2016

Islip Indoor Winter Farmers Market Dec 3 thru March 25

Visit us this Winter at the Islip Indoor Winter Farmers Market 

Saturdays 9am- 1pm December 3 thru March 25 

*(No Market Dec 24)*

at Christ Lutheran Church 117 Carleton Ave Islip Terrace, NY 11752

A new winter market with many familiar vendors.
Inside, all winter long, Saturday mornings.
Hope to see you there!

Toms' Honey Bees
Fink¹s Country Farm
Browder's Birds
Long Island Microgreens
Orwasher¹s Artisan Bakery
Little Lexis Barkery
Miss Amy¹s Preserves
Wally¹s Spotted Dog, LLC
Nut Punch
Herbie¹s Crumb Cake
Horman¹s Pickles
Macaron 5
Scone Heads Gourmet Foods
Knot of this World
Wild Style
Bambino Ravioli Pastificio
Mr Vins Bakery
Clean Essence soaps
Jenni Cakes
Chef Maureen

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Empire State Honey Producers Assoc. Fall Meeting 2016

Fri, Nov 4, 2016 8:30am - Sat, Nov 5, 2016 5:00pm

Pre-register and save, Open till 10/23/16,
or register at the door, can't guarantee lunch or dinner will be available for at the door registrations. Pre-Register to save and guarantee meals. 


The ESHPA Fall Meeting will be held at:

Embassy Suites Syracuse
6646 Old Collamer Rd South.
 (Same location as 2014 & 2015)
East Syracuse, NY 13057

2 Full days of Speakers and Beekeeping Presentations Featuring: 

Live Auction, and Silent Auctions 
Honey show with CASH prizes. 
Mead Competition - start those carboys brewing now. 
Beekeeper of the Year award. 
2 hour new beekeeper classes - requires sign up.

Gourmet Banquet featuring a honey of a menu: 
Honey Poached Pear Salad 
Honey Bourbon Glazed Pork Tenderloin 
Honey Creme Brulee. 


Guest Speakers

Bret Adee
Head of pollination at Adee Honey Farms, the largest Beekeeping outfit in the world.

Michele Colopy
Program director for the Pollinator Stewardship Council.

Paul Cappy
New York State Apiculturist for NYS Department of Ag & Markets.

Phil Craft
Phil writes the monthly column "ask Phil" in Bee Culture magazine.

Darrel Rufer
Run a large commercial Beekeeping Business.

A rep from New York State DOT will be on hand for questions.

Dr. Lundgren
Agroecologist, Director of ECDYSIS Foundation and CEO of Blue Dasher Farms.

Dr. McArt
Research Scientist in the Entomology Department at Cornell University.

NY FarmNet
Reps from NY FarmNet will be talking to us about what NY FarmNet is and how it can help.

Emma Mullen
Honey Bee Extension Associate in the Entomology Department at Cornell University.

Eric Wenger
Chairman of True Source Honey, Vice Chair of National Honey Board.

Mark Berninghausen
President of ESHPA, will be chairman of our fall meeting.


2016 Agenda for both days - Subject to change

Friday November 4, 2016
8:45 am - Welcome and introduction of Directors & Officers                                   
                 MARK BERNINGHAUSEN - ESHPA President
9:00 am - Dr. Scott McArt - Update on Cornell Research
9:45 am - Onondaga Count Health Department Rep - Lyme Disease Prevention and Detection
10:15 am - BREAK
10:45 am - Bret Adee - TBD
11:15 am - Hal McCabe - NY FarmNet - What is FarmNet and what can we do for your business?
11:15 am - Paul Cappy - NY Ag & Mkts - The New European is here
12:00 pm - LUNCH
1:00 pm - NY State Motor Carrier Safety Program Rep - Laws that affect motor vehicles used in beekeeping
1:30 pm - Dr. Jonathan Lundgren - Non-Chemical varroa control on Blue Dasher Farm
2:15 pm - BREAK
2:30 pm - Phil Craft - When beekeeping goes bad
3:00 pm - Darrel Rufer - Minnesota Hygienic Bees
3:45 pm - BREAK
6:00 pm - SOCIAL HOUR
7:00 pm - BANQUET –Silent Auction, Beekeeper of The Year Award, Honey and Mead Awards & “Beekeeping in Bangladesh - By Phil Craft”

Saturday November 5, 2016
9:00 am - Michele Colopy - Pesticides wintering in your hives
9:30 am - Dr. Jonathan Lungdren - Bio-Diversity and risks of pesticides
10:15 am - BREAK
10:45 am - Jerry LeClair - NY FarmNet - Where do we go from here? - Business Action Plans
11:15 am - Phil Craft - Varroa monitoring and control
12:00 pm - LUNCH
1:00 pm - Eric Wenger - True Source Honey - How clean is your honey?
                                                                             1:30pm - Bret Adee - TBD                                                                                                                                      
2:15 pm - BREAK
2:30 pm - Emma Mullen - Cornell Honeybee Extension Associate - NY Bee Tech Team Update
3:15 pm - Darrel Rufer - TBD


Friday, October 21, 2016

October nectar source

One of the few late fall plants for the bees to work are the Asters.
Native flowering plants that supply both nectar and pollen.

Some of the blooms are already spent but many are at full bloom and the bees
are working them hard. 

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Hayground School Artisanal Holiday Bazaar Dec. 3, 2016

Tom's Honey Bees will be at the Hayground Artisanal Holiday Bazaar in
Come visit, you won't be sorry!

Save the Date: Saturday December 3, 2016
Time: 10 am-4 pm
Place: Hayground School
151 Mitchell Lane Bridgehampton, NY

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Bee Yards in Early September

Bees are working hard to store honey before winter.
The hives in the two yards above are in their winter configurations.
All are queen-right and will be monitored for honey weight throughout the fall. Hive manipulations are completed so the bees can arrange themselves for Old Man Winter uninterrupted except for the
occasional hive "heft" to check their weight. Next time we will open them up is in the early Spring.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Honey Bee Plants in Late Summer on Long Island



Joe Pye


Swamp Mallow


Honey bee on knapweed flower

Hive action on a hot late August day.
Orientation fights and bearding.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Bee flowers in our beeyard during early July

Many people ask what 'flowers' honey bees are fond of.
You maybe surprised at what some of these wildflowers look like. The pics below are
from early and mid July in one of our bee yards. Zoom in for a good close look.

Staghorn sumac bloom.

Staghorn sumac tree.


Vetch & Birdsfoot treefoil
buckwheat in backround.

Sainfoin (pinkish) & yellow
sweet clover in grass.

Common Milkweed ready
to bloom.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016


So, the Black Locust has come and gone and didn't produce like it normally does. In fact, only half the trees bloomed and those that did bloomed for only a week. Wild black cherry is finished blooming as well.
But, we have had some rain and the white clover is blooming everywhere with
no signs of wilting off yet. White Dutch Clover loves moisture and cooler temperatures
which is just what we are having! Bees love white dutch and it makes a darn good honey.
Blooming now is hairy vetch, birds foot trefoil, the beginning of yellow sweet clover and some
sainfoin we tilled in last spring ('15) - and they are all great bee plants.
Some honey is capped but there is a lot of nectar in the supers that still needs to be cured by the bees. And much more to come if the weather gods give us some regular rainfall through June. I wonder
how the privet and linden bloom will be?
It's been an odd spring with lots of starts and stops but an interesting one nonetheless.

It was a really nice day to super up some hives today.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Islip Farmers Market 2016

Tom's Honey Bees can be found every Saturday morning from
7 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Islip Farmers Market. The market will run
from May 28 - Nov 19, 2016 on Saturday mornings, rain or shine.

See you there!

Islip Town Hall Parking Lot
Montauk Highway, Route 27A
655 Main St, Islip, NY 11751

Monday, May 2, 2016

Nuc Pickup 2016

Nucs will be ready for pickup on Saturday 5/14/16.
Please check your email for details.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Spring Bee Yard Management

After a cold start to April the bees are right back on track doing
what bees do in the warmer temperatures and with ever more
flower and tree blossoms opening.
What do bees do in the Spring?
They collect pollen and nectar and make more bees! and lots of them.
The beekeepers job is to manage that population growth so all of the colonies
in the apiary are in optimum condition to collect as much nectar as possible. The nectar will be ripened by the bees and turned into our beloved honey later this summer.
Part of our management is to make new honey bee colonies to expand our apiary and to also offer some for sale to those that are interested in starting hives of their own.
The photo (from 4/13/16) shows four new colonies of bees sitting on top of existing hives separated by a wooden double screen board. The warm air from below rises and gives the new colony much needed heat to expand rapidly. In as little as 4 weeks they will be removed from their perches and placed on their own stand as a full colony of bees with a large population that is ready to make a honey crop for us.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Pollen Party

The bees were having a pollen party today! 3/23/16 64* clear and calm
Spring has sprung.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

A Bee Yard on February 28

Can't beat 55* at the end of February. Got out to feed the bees some pollen
sub so they are fit for spring duties in April an May. We need
nice strong colonies for apple pollination by the end of April!
The bees sure looked good today and it was nice to see them flying and
finding some pollen to bring home. Maple trees and skunk cabbage are
the likely sources but I saw a lone dandelion flower and some crocus and
mouse ear chickweed blooming as well.

Now look at the action up close!

Look for the bee carrying the white pollen load
pushing her way into the entrance.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Bees enjoying nice winter weather

1/7/16 44*f, clear, calm
So far it's been a fair weather winter on Long Island. The bees
like it too!

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Home yard in early January

47f, clear, breezy.
Bees flying and collecting a light mustard yellow pollen.
The blue hive to the right, with blue stripe near the top, is a double medium nuc
that has 2 separate colonies living in that one hive for the winter. 

a couple of overwintered individual nuc hives wrapped in
black felt paper for the winter.