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Quilted Cover for the Pacific Northwest


June 23rd Quilted Cover


Very cool and well thought out. I also live in the PNW region, have two flow hives and will be following your posts to see your updates on the quilted cover. I also liked your graphics on your previous post.



I like some of the different features of your moisture “quilt”. What part of Western Washington do you live … I live east of Renton several miles (actually 3.2 ms per my NOAA Wx station locator). When did you put your Flow-Hive into action with bees ? How long have you had the Flow-Super on your hive ? Are you operating double deeps (8 frames) or single at your location ? Sorry for all the question but curious about your setup here in Puget Sound.

I’m returning to beekeeping after 55 year absence… The old honeybee, pollination, honey idea kept calling to me. So last late summer I bit the bullet n started buying equipment, building hives n ordered 3 Nuc’s in October. Got them 15th of April. Been taking few classes as beekeeping has radically changed with mites n other new issues we didn’t have to challenge out 1950’s n 60’s beekeeping…

Yah ! PNW is a challenge with out mild but long cool periods with high moisture n rainy periods. Ventation was an issue even in yesterday-years but if we lost a colony we were lucky to repopulate with Swarms. Not so easy to get swarms now n colonies of bees are a bit more pricey currently n that’s not going to come down. Thus I am looking at ideas n ways to keep my hives healthy, successful n get thru the regions complex n damp winter seasons.

Thanks for the write up n pix’s.

Gerald in Coalfield.


Note to Dave,

My Flow-Hive is nearing the Ready for Occupancy. I have a strong double deep 5 frame Nuc to add probably this next week. It was the first n only swarm I’ve captured this 2016 swarm season.



Thanks for your comments.

If PNW includes “Cascadia” I am at 49.0546° -122.3280° as posted — this is in British Columbia, close to the border, in Abbotsford.

To view the Quilted Cover construction details, you can use left/right arrow keys to step through my posts and navigate to the June 23rd entry. You’ll see that the Flow™ frames were added on June 14th of this year. I am sure it is the case that you have far more experience working with colonies than myself — this is my first hive. If you are able to see previous posts, there is a complete evolution of my hive, from the nuc installation on April 23, 2016.

So, yes, I have two 8-frame Langstroth boxes, now under the six Flow™ frames.

It happens that there is some moisture collecting in the newsprint that I’ve just added into the quilted cover. Today, I pulled out the newsprint, and have left the quilt completely open. The debate is whether to leave insulation material in the quilt to absorb moisture (rather than let it collect and possibly drip down over the colony), or to anticipate that air flow will maintain generally dry conditions. My hunch is that any material above the colony will restrict air flow, collect moisture and mold. It may be possible to frequently replace the moisture absorbing material. I think this would be a valid solution. It may also be that with a larger plenum (air space) above the colony that the rising moist air, if unrestricted, will be better vented. This quilt is yet an experiment, and will likely require seasonal adaptation.