So today was the day that I cracked open the hive. About 8 days late. Wow. Now I understand the busy as a bee thing. Sheesh. Those critters have been doing some work. Unfortunately, the didn't understand the instructions.... The instructions are to build wax comb on the foundations provided. Each foundation is enclosed in a frame. The frames can be lifted out and examined and then put back in.
When I installed the bees, I removed two frames so that the bees would fall into the hive box and not sit in a pile on top of the frames. I did not, and should have, gone back the next day and put the frames back in... Yeah. The bees built their own comb - not attached to any frame, but most certainly attached to the inner cover, which is the top of the hive. Uh, yeah. That is not cool. That is now where the majority of bees are hanging out and where the brood, if there is any has been laid - but I can't tell now can I because it isn't in a frame so I can't look at it..... Like I said. Not cool. Trust me on this. But, in my usual way, I will ignore the problem and figure out a solution later.
Generally, the inspection process went remarkably well. The bees seemed MUCH calmer than I was. I puffed a little smoke into the hive and expected a torrent when I opened the top, but no. Just a bunch of bees hangin' out. I pulled the inner cover off and found the wax stuck to it. Again, they were all totally cool. I shuffled things around and pulled some of the frames out to check them out. Totally cool. No one was really concerned with any of this. When I reached in to the hive to pull out the queen cage (empty), they most definitely let me know that hive invasion is NOT acceptable. Apparently I can take whatever I want OUT of the hive, but they are not keen on anything going INTO the hive (including hands or new frames). Which, I suppose, is something I can live with. After all, if done properly, there is really very little I will need to put in there. And with luck, there will be MUCH that I will be removing. That is the theory anyway.
I am waiting and hoping that the predicted warm weather arrives to save my seedlings from damping off. Many of the tomatoes are just stalled with the cold. I am concerned that extended damp will eventually get to them. This weekend will be filled with planting sunflowers and tithonia and zinnias in the wild areas of the yard. It is a special request of the SB that we have random sunflowers. Yes, I can do that, assuming the wildlife stays fed on other things.
I got the mower out tonight. Really. I was going to mow. But I couldn't get it started. It is always problematic the first mowing of spring. I will take it to my Step Dad tomorrow and he will tell me what is wrong. Other than it is a cheap ass mower that hasn't been maintained for most of the millennium and works way too hard. I felt bad about that maintenance part so I went to Sears and bought a new air filter and mower blade to mollify the mower. Nothing like throwing some cash at some machinery to make you feel like you are making progress on a project.
BTW. Some people have WAY too much time on their hands.