This morning I staggered past a note written by my Roomie, and misread it of course, because reading with one's eyes shut really isn't very affective, I've discovered. I answered the question I THOUGHT she wrote.
Later, with java in my blurred hands, I re-read the note. Calling my now-confused Roomie, I responded; "OH the answer to your question is not the question I answered." She needed me to check her wee little Grand Fir, the Gladstone Tree, which she has babied Lo! these many years in a pot. We planted it out four years ago, now. Every few years, it suffers an attack of those nasty vampire aphids, you know, the ones that are as big as scale but aren't? The Ahnold SchwartzeAphids? and we spray it with Neem, hose 'er off a few days later, and Voila! She grows another foot. Well, she got hit pretty bad, and with this past week of exceptionally hot weather, she got her tip buds whalloped! Saturday, Dianne sprayed her well with Neem. Today I went out to spray her with Dawn dish washing water, to loosen up that yucky sooty must the aphids leave behind.
There was a wee honey bee circling lazily around the Gladstone Tree, then I spied another, and another. Now, I am alert to these kinds of things, as I am pretty severely allergic to bee stings, and anaphylactic shock just ain't pretty.
I moved closer. Anaphylactic shock or not, curiosity gets THIS Kat every time. Along the trunk, I see a darkened mass, which seemingly seethes with golden stripes, like a molten tiger. It takes me a few seconds to figure out what I am seeing. It's a bivouac of honey bees! It's about 8" long by 6" wide, by maybe 4-5" thick. It's beautiful!
SO! My brain starts whirring, startling the Starlings who are stealing cat food off the porch. I have about 500 apple trees! Not to mention the few plums and peaches, and huckleberries and blueberries which are making a valiant effort to thrive here... Fruits and vegetables LIKE pollenators! I wonder??? I called upon my Good Friend, Google
I m awaiting a local beekeeper to come look and see if we can "socialize" them.