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Almond Pollination 2010

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Almond Flower Blossom

Almond Flower

The following few days we return to check on the colonies for movement and acceptance - to make sure they are pollinating the area. One of the mornings we drive down to Bakersfield from Tehachapi the snows have fallen at the ranch and the roads are covered it is cold. March in California in the high desert area.

Klaus cleaning snow off window of truck Peering out snowy truck window A snowy day at the ranch Sand Canyon ranch road Sand Canyon snow in March
BNSF Rail Entering Tehachapi from the ranch Heading nort along Hwy 58 from Tehachai Hwy 58 - from Tehachapi Hwy 58 - coming out of snow
Northbound to Tejon Pass - Hwy 58 Hwy 58 - to Almonds Hwy 58 - coming down pass Cherries along Hwy 58 Orange groves clipped

The Almond Groves hives, contracted for pollination, are a combination of the avocado grove hives (Carpenteria) and the alfalfa fields - our two 'wintering' sites.

Checking almond grove Along the back quarters Almond grove check Almond bloom Bees from lid side
Reentering from lid shake Trees bound Almond blossoms Bee on an almond blossoms 1 Bee on an almond blossoms 2
3 year almond trees 5 year almond trees Older almond trees Fuzzy outer skin of almond from blossom

This year we employed a French method of topping the frames with a liquid blend of Fumagil / sugar / water as a medication (no honey flow).

Fumagillin sugar water mixture

The blossoms are ready to pop open and in some places fully open. The bees are flying and the job is 'on'.

The drive back from the groves is over the Tejon Pass, truly one of the most beautiful sights snow capped mountains around lush green rolling fields with cattle lazily grazing. Every time we cross this pass I marvel at the sheer expanse and incredible vistas that never cease to amaze with light changes, colours and smells of Nature how small man is in contrast.

From Bakersfield to Tehachapi Cows along Hwy 58 into Tehachapi Greenery along Hwy 58 Rocky outcrop along Tejon Pass - Hwy 58 Tejon - Hwy58 Tejon Pass - clouds Tejon Pass - clouds 2
Pasture along Tejon Pass Rocky outcrop (2) along Tejon Pass - Hwy 58 Pastures in bloom along Hwy 58 Along Hwy 58 heading south Last Tejon Pass to Tehachapi One more wind in the road - Hwy 58 Pass climbing to Tehachapi
Hwy 58 into Tehachapi From window - Hwy 58 Entering Tehachapi Pass Train from Bakersfield to Tehachapi Train tunnel into Tehachapi Back to Tehachapi Road to ranch

And an hour 45 minutes later we arrive back at Tehachapi the snows all but gone the air still chilled another day of contrast (Bakersfield with a temperature degree considerably higher/no snow almost a summer weather).

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