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04 Jun

Two different people in the past four days have mentioned their fruit trees have no evidence of fruit growth.  One lives locally on a farm and has two apple trees, two pear trees, and one plum tree.  The other lives in a rural community and has one cherry tree.  Both claim to have had an abundance of spring blossoms but are left now with only leaves growing and no sign of fruit.  The same thing last year I was told by another acquaintance happened to him, affecting his ability to make wine from his grove of plum trees. 

Climate change?  Harsh winters?  Loss of honey bees?  Most people have their own opinion on this matter.  But I like to leave it to the experts whose job it is to research, educate and make recommendations about what is happening to our environment that ultimately affects our food sources.  And to them, I turn.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture in a recent report, “Losses of managed honey bee colonies hit 42.1 percent from April 2014 through April 2015, up from a 34.2 percent loss for 2013-2014, and the second highest loss to date.”  The results are based on responses from approximately 6,100 beekeepers managing about 400,000 colonies, or roughly 15.5 percent of U.S. bee colonies.  Honey bees are responsible for pollinating plants that produce one quarter of the food consumed by Americans.  That’s one out of every four bites of food!  I did not realize it, but an online article from Reuters on May 13 reported that “Beekeepers travel the country with managed hives to help the process.”  But with soaring honeybee losses over previous years, there are less managed hives available to travel! 

In this series of blog posts, I plan to cover the topic of bees in general.  We learn as young children to fear those bothersome buzzing bees, mostly from watching adults scramble from, swat at, scream out, or spray to kill them.  But what kind of bees are they?  Does it really make a difference, you ask?  I say yes!  Find out in my next post (Sting Operation or Swat Team?  Part Two) where I will begin by covering various types of bees.  

And by the way, thanks for reading my post!  You can easily share it on Facebook and Twitter by clicking icons below!  

 

“To be(e), or not to be(e): that is the question!”  William Shakespeare (as revised by me) 


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