Saturday, 2 April 2016

Foam broccoli boxes - useful beekeeping gear

Foam broccoli boxes are an excellent bit of beekeeping equipment that cost nothing.  Their usefulness may not be news to some, but hey, we think the tip is worth passing on.

Broccoli box by side of hive, ready to hold frames

  • They are perfect for hive inspections - after you've inspected frame #2, pop it in the broccoli box, lid on, and then you'll have more room in the hive to move the remaining frames in and out easily.
  • Need to re-queen but can't find her?  They are great for storing frames when you are searching for the queen. Divide and conquer - put the frames from your super into multiple broccoli boxes. Keep the lids on.  Then go through each box. It stops bees flying everywhere and makes the process more manageable.
  • Harvesting frames of honey? Gently brush the bees off the frame and put it in the broccoli box with the lid on. This will get most of the bees off and stop more flying back on.  You'll be able to get at least 5 frames in a box. Repeat the process with the frames in the broccoli box by brushing each again and transferring to another broccoli box and you should be able to get a bee-less box of honey frames. The boxes are light and easy to carry so they're good for transporting frames of honey to where they will be processed.
  • Solar wax purifying - we use a foam broccoli box as part of our solar wax purifying set up. See here for more details.

So where do you get these useful boxes?  Just ask your local green grocer. They usually have a steady supply and can spare a few.

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