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"O honey-bees, Come build in the empty house of the stare” (Yeats)

honey beeWhen out in my brother's place on Thursday last my sister-in-law gave me a jar of her wonderful gooseberry jam. She makes many kinds of jam and apple tarts each year. This year she has a particularly fine crop of fruits and cooking apples because she took great care of the trees and bushes and protected them from the birds.
But I'm told that honeybees are very scarce this year - down 30% - because of the dreadful rains during 2012 which prevented them from collecting nectar and pollen needed to produce honey. Come to think of it I haven't seen a honeybee myself this year - plenty of bumble-bees though.

[stare = starling]


We have the same here with the bees. Plenty of bumblebees but no honeybees. Thanks for friending me.
Welcome. So long as the bees keep away from me with their sting I love their honey!
Honey? I remember the song Russian Winnie-the-Pooh.
When it was the season of bees, I've seen enough of them. And even heard a story about honey bees. This honey is delicious, but very few people it produces.

Мёд ?! Вспоминается русская песенка Винни-Пуха.
Когда наступил сезон пчел, то я видел их достаточно. И даже слышал рассказ о мёде шмелей. Этот мёд очень вкусный, но очень редко кто его добывает.
Yes. I love both honey and fruit jams very much.
Wow! Preserves, jams ... - It's so delicious. I love it. Just do not store bought and prepared their own fruit and vegetables. I also like compotes.

Вау !!! Варенье, джемы... - это так вкусно. Обожаю. Только не покупные, а приготовленные из собственных ягод и фруктов. А еще мне нравятся компоты.
There's been a shortage of buzzy little pollinators in areas of England, too. My grandparents have an orchard that's gone from 'embarrassment of riches' as they try to get everyone possible to take a box of fruit, to 'I'm sure there were fruit trees around here someplace'. Bad news if you're thinking abou the ecosystem, but not too bad for them as a tiny harvest means minimal maintenance (they're getting on in years but hate to admit to it).
If you get short of recipes for gooseberries, apples and the resultant preserves...I have many. Too many, considering my lack of socialising.
Ah well, soon be time to bake a large batch of apple and honey cakes for the synagogue's annual Rosh Hashanah party!
The plight of bees (honey and otherwise) is so sad, and so very worrying. I've been delighted to see honey bees enjoying my lavender this year, for the first time in several years.