Harvesting some wild Haiku Maui honey for Christmas
We were blessed to have some honey bees move into an old shed and build their hive here on our Haiku Maui farm. They have been very busy because there was a huge amount of honey combs inside when we took a quick peek. Luckily a friend and neighbor who has his own hives suggested he could remove the queen bee and the colony to his nearby location. He even offered to leave us with the honey since he already has plenty.
So he came over with his buddy, got all suited up and prepared for the task. He has this smoking device that emits smoke to confuse the bees and make it a little safer for himself. They bravely entered the small shed and took account of the situation... lots of combs in there! Then they proceeded to carve away as much as possible, dumping the good clean stuff into a 5 gallon bucket, and keeping any active looking combs that contained "brood". The active combs have bee larvae which will become more worker bees.
The brood combs were loaded into a vacant "hive" box where they will hopefully take hold and this will become their new home. At some point it was apparent that the queen was moved as well and the new box was covered up and loaded on the back of his truck. We grabbed the pail of honey and got out of there quickly. Yes, they were stung in a few places, but they were expecting it and not surprised or complaining much. Ouch... I would have been.
Processing the combs was interesting. First off, vacuuming all the live and dead bees off the bucket and combs while sorting through them and trying not to get stung. Then the cleaned combs were put into a big canning pot and heated up so the honey and beeswax separate. After cooling overnight the wax just comes off. There's still plenty of debris ( bee parts) in the honey so it gets strained. We just used a paint strainer cloth and that worked great.
The end result was poured into sterilized jars and capped, ready to give away for Christmas presents! Lovely natural raw honey from wild honey bees in Haiku Maui Hawaii. The flavor is like nothing else! We know these bees have lots of tropical flowers to harvest, such as guava, Christmas Berry, heliconias, basil, papayas and more. Since we don't use Roundup or other nasty poisons on our property it's reassuring to know this will be a superior product. I love that our neighborhood consists of people who also respect the land and try to grow organically, and keep it low-key. No big business farming in this area! We love living in Haiku Maui.
Do you want to find a home for sale in Haiku Maui so you can raise your own bees?
As you can imagine I am experimenting with lots of new recipes that include honey. We are very grateful for our sweet honey bounty from Haiku bees. Do you have any favorite honey recipes to share?
127 Hana Hwy. #G, Paia HI 96779
direct: 808 283-0635