The Bee Tree

Apple tree in bloom

The apple tree in its full glory

I knew 2017 would be a good apple year–the trees had only spit out a few lonely blossoms in 2016–but I hadn’t realized HOW good it would be. The tree closest to the house was especially spectacular. It wasn’t just laden with blossoms: It was humming with bees as well.

Bee in flower against house

A bee digs into a flower with gusto.

My hives are sadly empty; one colony had filled its hive with comb and absconded two years ago, leaving combs full of honey but fortunately no brood or signs of disease. The second colony stayed with me last summer but followed the same pattern, filling their hive with comb and then abandoning it. (Alas, this colony took a fat comb’s worth of honey with them, leaving only wax to pay their rent.)

Both colonies had sent out at least three swarms during the summer, so I suspected (and hoped) that at least some of the bees would stay in the neighborhood. Apparently, some did; despite my empty hives, my yard has been buzzing for the last few weeks. At first, they mostly went for ground ivy blossoms . I was overjoyed to see them; their humming filled me with peace and a sense of reunion.

Bee on ground ivy flower

A bee enjoys a ground ivy flower. Who says these plants are weeds? I love them as much as the bees do!

They were quick to take advantage of the apple trees’ bounty, though.

Bee on apple blossom

A bee enjoys the new addition to her diet.

The bees, however, weren’t the only ones enjoying the blossom-laden apple trees; Sage spent a fair amount of time stretched out in the hammock beneath them.

Sage in hammock and Court

Sage ate a snack in his hammock beneath two apple trees. Unfortunately for Court, he didn’t share.

Alas, the blooms have faded now, leaving the trees looking a bit forlorn despite their new green leaves. But I suspect they won’t be bare for long; thanks to the bees’ diligence, I’d better start looking for apple recipes NOW…




  1. This is a wonderful post with your photos of your apple tree in bloom. Enjoyed that you included your family as they enjoy this beautiful spring outdoors🌧🌞 We have had months of heavy rains in California so are roses are so incredibly happy now that it’s hot they all popping and popping and popping

    1. Thank you for the kind words about my post. I wish you and your roses all the best!

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