The abundance of our summer harvest includes bee hive frames heavy with honeycomb and that sweet golden liquid stashed inside.
This is a frame full of honeycomb. Once a hexagonal wax cell is filled with honey, the bees cap it off, so the honey remains inside. When one frame is filled up, like this one, the bees start working on the next frame. A hive box, or super, usually contains four of these frames.
I harvest honey the simplest way, without any fancy equipment. I scrape off the honeycomb and the honey from the frames – a sticky endeavor that leaves drips of honey on my arms and on the counter, no matter how carefully I work.
A side benefit of doing this sticky work is that you can place a few clumps of this honeycomb in your mouth and chew on it, sucking out the honey. This must have been the original chewing gum!
Now for the final step of separating honey from wax:
It is that simple!
The frames still have remnants of honeycomb and bits of honey on them. I place them outside where the bees can find them and finish cleaning them. They do a pretty good job over a few days.
And the final product filled with the sweetest essence extracted from flowers, herbs, vegetables, and trees:
Whatever honey the bees make from now on will be their food supply for those long, lean winter months lurking on the horizon.
The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Frame.