Clean Bee Soapworks

Extracting honey means to take honeycomb, and process it just enough to get the raw honey out of the comb into a jar, and then onto your table.  We are careful to leave 60-80 pounds of honey on each hive for the bees.  We only get the surplus which averages about 40 pounds per hive in a good year.  This  year,  2015, we have six hives making honey, the rest are making bees as part of our sustainability program.  This year we are also preparing to sell comb honey for the first time. 


1.  It is harder than it looks to cut straight pieces of comb, of a regular size. 

2.  There is natural variation in how thick the bees draw out and fill the individual honey comb sections.

3. Honey gets everywhere

4. Miscuts are the property of the beekeeper making the mistakes.... some mistakes may have been on purpose.



This

Chunk honey is a piece of honey comb, surrounded by liquid honey.

This is the preparation for the Greenbelt Farmers Market.

Honey comes in different colors, as the bees use different nectar sources throughout the spring.

Far Right, first extraction of 2014 light locust honey 

Middle: second extraction of 2014 slightly darker 

Far Left   2013 late extraction.


Our Bees 

We are a small apiary in Laurel MD, just south of the Patuxent Wildlife Center.  The bees are worked by Kim, Mike and James Mehalick.  Right now we have 18 hives, at the house.  These are all from packages and  splits which are new hives with a new queen that need to build up for  this winter.   We get no honey from a  hive until it is in its second year.

 

The winter of 2017-2018 was devastating to our apiary. Our beehives were lost, and we are rebuilding.   We are happy to say we will have some honey available from another Maryland beekeeper this year.  So you will be able to get real honey from a real beekeeper.  Our hives will not give any honey this year.  All of their energy is to becoming strong hives, ready for the winter.


In preparing our honey we keep it as natural as possible.  We simply filter our honey, never heat it. It is full of all the goodness from the bees.  Normally we have ttwo extractions to get the light yellow prized black locust honey. This pale honey is flavorful and wonderful, and is from the black locust tree one of the primary nectar sources here in Maryland. The tree flowers for 7-9 days in April. If the hives are not strong enough early - very little honey is made. We sell liquid honey in 2 oz honey bears, 4 oz muth jars ( based on a glass mold from the 1880's), 8 oz and 1 pound sizes.