Honeyflow.com | FAQ's |

The color of my honey 🍯

Hi Beeks!

I have a quick question…I harvested the honey on the left in August straight from the hives. The two honeys on the right were just harvested in February from frames I had stored. (I pulled them in October.) I know the color depends on the pollen they bring into the hive, but I don’t understand why the clear vs. cloudy?

1 Like

Looks like they are in various stages of crystallization to me. If you taste a spoonful, is it slightly gritty? If so, those are glucose crystals. Doesn’t affect the quality of the honey at all, but just about all honeys will crystallize eventually (weeks to months). :blush:

1 Like

Not really. :confused:

It was like this straight from the harvest with no time passing. Does it start to crystallize behind the wax caps in the comb? (Since I waited from October to February to harvest it?)

Hi @Dawn_NorthChicago :blush: Goldenrod & other late-season nectars will crystallize easily. It’s been mentioned that this helps with absorbing moisture in the air that could otherwise lead to condensation in the hive in cold temps but I don’t have a factual reference handy at the moment…

Anyway, nothing wrong with thick honey - it’s easier to spread on toast & will stay there, instead of dribbling onto your shirt. Not that that EVER happens to me, of course :wink:

2 Likes

Not from my understanding, it’s the nectar source that gives it the characteristics.
My first thought was same as Dawn’s, other Dawn, crystallising, and sometimes you don’t notice the grit because it is still soft or you’re too busy trying to get the dribble of honey off your shirt, never happens to me either…
There appears to be a froth on the top of the two jars on the right and none in the one on the left so a couple of questions to clarify and I’m assuming they are all Flow harvested?
How were the frames stored? Was it warm when you harvested? Have you checked their water content?
Yes honey will crystallise in the frames, both traditional and Fframes which is one of the reasons why it is better to harvest before storing. :wink:

3 Likes

I won’t add to what others have wrote- all of which sounds about right- however I will just say that is very very light colored honey! Nice. You should enter that in your royal show…

But yes- good idea to check the water content if you can.

1 Like

Yes it does. I have spun many a capped frame with crystallized honey, only to have the comb disintegrate when I tried too hard to spin it out. :blush:

You should really extract honey within a week or two of removing it from the hive to avoid my experience… :smile:

2 Likes

In America??? Royal??? HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! :smile: :joy: :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :rofl:

6 Likes

Hi Dawn,

Have you tasted or sniffed your bubbly honey? I wonder if you have some mead fermenting there :beers:

3 Likes

The jar on the right is bubbling away nicely so it is fermenting. Too high a water content.
Honey doesn’t get its color from the pollen, it comes from what the bees are foraging on and will change color over a year, the color is in the nectar.
With a flow hive super you should remove the frames when you think they are fully capped, confirm that is the case visually and put them back into the hive and after two days of letting the bee propolis them back into the super box then only extract frames that were at least 90% capped.
I wish my colonies could produce clear honey like the one on the left, very nice and I would bet a very subtle flavor.
Cheers

2 Likes

Hi guys! Thank you for all of your feedback - I read it back in March when I first posted. A couple of things…I tested the moisture content and it was a tad high, which explains the fermentation aspect. Is this still okay to eat?

Regarding the honey on the left, I was sooo lucky - it was the most beautiful color and tasted so wonderful. All of my friends loved it. When I did this second harvest, it turned out so different! :frowning: I will definitely not wait to harvest next time! (Also, to answer another question, it is not a flow hive, it’s a Langstroth…)

Thank you for all of your feedback!!

2 Likes

Hi @Dawn_NorthChicago - your bubbly honey is on it’s way to becoming an alcoholic beverage, as @Faroe mentioned…taste a little and tell us how it is :crazy_face:

2 Likes

@Eva has nailed it, if the water content is too high it will ferment and turn into an alcohol, that is fine if done correctly and mead is made, but if not done in a controlled way then flush it down the kitchen sink as it is no good for you or the bees. There is heaps of info if you Google how to make mead if you want to give it a try.
There is no such thing as the moisture content being a “tad high” any more than being “a little bit pregnant”, stick to the standards and you will not go wrong.
No matter at all if your honey comes from a Flow Hive or a Langstroth, it will still be pure honey and so much better than the crap sold on the supermarket shelves.
Thanks for the update.
Cheers

3 Likes

Hahahaha, @Peter48, that made me laugh out loud. Point well taken! :joy::joy:

It was just above the 18.5% that is considered acceptable. (I’ve read clover honey is known to be higher.). I do know about mead being an option, but haven’t tried to tackle that yet.

Can I make creamed honey if I find a good seed to start with? Or should I just try to find some mead-making friends to donate to? :slight_smile:

2 Likes

To make creamed honey it still needs to have a low water content or it will ferment. I haven’t made mead myself, I like my wine too much.:grin::grin::fearful: But I will give it a shot when I have some honey to spare. (hic, burp)!!!

2 Likes

Ditto on the wine! :wine_glass::wine_glass::clinking_glasses::clinking_glasses:

1 Like