Friday, November 25, 2016

All I want for Christmas is...

Hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving! But now that it's over, it's time to think about Christmas, and I'm putting in my wish list early.  So what would I like?

Keeping Bees in Horizontal Hives by George de Layens

Dr. Sharashkin, editor/translator of Lazutin's Keeping Bees with a Smile, has finished translating George de Layens work, Keeping Bees in Horizontal Hives. de Layens was the inspiration and source for much of Lazutin's approach to beekeeping.

According to the HorizontalHive's website, this book covers:

  • Time-tested methods boasting over 100 years of successful use
  • Horizontal hives: advantages and use
  • An honest overview of all hive systems
  • Keys to success, based on decades of experience
  • Extra-deep frames: advantages, design, and use
  • Detailed practical advice with 200+ illustrations 

Although this translation will not be released until January 2017, it can be pre-ordered for $29.95, which is a $20 discount off the post-publication price.

Advanced Top Bar Beekeeping by Christy Hemenway

Christy has a new book that is written for beekeepers who have survived their first winter.

The description on her website reads:
"The sequel to the original "The Thinking Beekeeper" book - this volume will take you into Year 2 and beyond. Splits, Swarm prevention, moving hives - all the things you're ready to learn in Year 2."
This book is priced at $29.00 and is expected to ship around Dec 22.

So that's it for me. My gotta-have list this year is pretty modest. However, if you're shopping for your favorite beekeeper, there is no end of things you can give to support his/her habit -- books, a Flir, new jackets or gloves, kits for making lip balms, lotions, mead, candles...

If you're a beekeeper, what would you like to see in your stocking this year? 


  1. Refractometer, two-frame extractor for top bar or Warré-sized combs, and a whole bunch of epinephrine auto-injectors :)

    1. Nice list! Sometimes, I think about getting a small extractor, too. Hope Santa comes through!

  2. The de Layens book sounds interesting. I enjoyed Lazutin's book and would be interested in learning more about horizontal hives and the theory behind it. Christy's book I will likely pass on, as I didn't agree with her hive approach (middle entrances) and some of her stated science seemed incorrect to me.

    I actually want a freezer this year. I don't have a good space to freeze frames. Something more than 20 inches wide to fit a frame across. Your books are probably more practical, I suppose. I hope Santa is good to you.

    1. I agree that I didn't 100% love Christy's first book either, but I'm kind of curious about how she deals with certain issues.

      A freezer sounds like a good item to have. I have a stand-up freezer, but it's always too full for me to use for comb. In my last house, we had a vintage International Harvester chest freezer that had been left by the previous tenants. It was big enough to fit several bodies in it. Sometimes, I look at comb and wistfully long for that thing.

      Anyway, hopefully, you've been a good boy and get that freezer! ;-)

  3. AŽ Beekeeping with the Slovenian Hive, by Janko Božič, Honeybee Democracy, an extra long hive tool. And a horned Viking helmet to make mead. ;-)

    I was coming out of Home Depot the other day and they had a huge freezer on closeout. I thought about getting it to freeze comb since my small one doesn't fit my 12 frame nuc. But my wife won't let me get a wood chipper after watching Fargo, so I'm sure she wouldn't be comfortable with a body sized freezer.

    1. That's such a great scene in Fargo! When/if I put my house on the market, Don, I have an upright freezer that I could give you a fellow-beekeeper rate on. And I might even sell it with the combs of honey (still on their top bars!) in it.

      Anybody have the book, "Bee Time: Lessons from the Hive" by Mark Winston? It's on my wish list.

    2. Well, Don, if you have a wood chipper, you don't really need a body-sized freezer. ;-) The book on Slovenian hives sounds very interesting, and less dangerous, though.

      HB, I don't have Bee Time, but Mark Winston's book on bee biology is so awesome that I may have to add that one to the list!

    3. I don't have that one, but I saw him talk at the WAS meeting here last fall and it's on my backup list (so many books, so little time). There's a good article in the latest Bee Culture magazine by Mark on pesticides. Also, there's an interview in Bee Culture with Sam Comfort - I love his bamboo skewers for bars! Looks like he's keen on horizontal hives now.

    4. HB, I'll take you up on that freezer offer if/when the time comes! My wife might not object to an upright freezer - not so coffin-like. ;-)


Thank you for your comment! I can't wait to hear what you think!