Hope Honey FarmOwner: Maggie Mills
daytime phone: (301) 683-8853
Web site: http://www.hopehoneyfarm.com
Application Date: 2013-09-30
- Please briefly tell us why you are applying to have your apiary be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program. *
- I am a small scale producer who does not find the USDA organic label to be cost effective. I practice organic practices when growing fruits, vegetables & herbs and I do not use chemicals in my apiary.
- Is the land on which your apiary sits currently certified (by CNG or another organization)? *
- Has the land on which your apiary sits ever been Certified in the past? *
- How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
- I have been hearing about it in the media, but most recently at the Mother Earth News Fair in Pennsylvania.
- Please check all markets where you sell your honey. *
- You may use this space to specify where customers can purchase your honey (this will be displayed on your profile to help customers find you).
- Franklin's General Store, Brewery & Restaurant Contact seller through Facebook
- How many hives are in your apiary (or apiaries)? *
- currently 9
- Before continuing, please take a moment to review the 5 steps to Apiary Certification. (You may do this by clicking the link below.) Are they clear? *
Apiary Location and Position
- Some beekeepers seek certification for more than one apiary. Please provide the location (or locations) of the apiary (or apiaries) for which you seek certification. *
- 3923 Livingston St. Hyattsville, MD 20781 4200 Crittenden St. Hyattsville, MD 20781
- Briefly describe the landscape where the apiary is located. What surrounds the apiary? What are the nectar sources? *
- We plant alfalfa, hairy vetch, and crimson clover in the field surrounding our Crittenden apiary. We provide a water source at both locations. While both apiaries are located in urban environments, we are situated just blocks from a forested area and the bees have significant forage opportunities. Tulip Poplar, Black Locust, Bass wood, cherry, apple, pear, peach and a variety of native forage are available in residential and natural areas. We are situated just blocks from the Anacostia River waterway which provides significant forage for both bee yards.
- Do you own or manage the land on which your apiary is located? (If at least one of your apiaries is on land you own or manage, answer yes.) *
- Do you agree not to use on this land any synthetic materials that are not allowed under the CNG produce or honey programs? *
- I agree not to use any materials that are not allowed under the CNG Produce or honey programs on this land.
- Use this space to describe any land management practices you use to support the honey bee population. *
- We plant alfalfa, hairy vetch, and crimson clover in the field surrounding our Crittenden apiary. We provide a water source at both locations. While both apiaries are located in urban environments, we are situated just blocks from a forested area and the bees have significant forage opportunities.
- Within each apiary for which you seek certification, do you manage any hives "conventionally", using practices or substances that are not allowed under the CNG apiary standards? *
Hive Construction, Components, and Brood Comb Removal
- Do your hives have any paint or chemical treatment on the interior surface of the hive? *
- Do you have, or will you develop, a labeling system and schedule to ensure removal of at least 20% of brood frame per year, such that there is never brood comb present that is more than 5 years old? *
- Please briefly describe your brood comb removal practices to date, and your plans for the coming seasons. *
- We are labeling brood frames with the date of installation and plan to cull brood frames using this system. This practice will ensure frames are never more than 5 years old.
- Does your apiary contain brood comb that A) is from another beekeeper (including from purchased nuc), or B) has been exposed to Tylan, or C) has been exposed to three or more treatments of fluvalinate (Apistan, Mavrik) or amitraz (Miticur, Taktic, or Mitak)? *
- Will you ensure that, through brood comb replacement or operation expansion, no more than 40% of the exposed comb will be present in the apiaries to be certified, AND that the exposed comb that remains will be marked and removed from your apiary within two years? Your apiary will have transitional status until all exposed comb is replaced. *
- Please indicate the month and year when you expect you will have replaced all marked brood comb (the comb that was purchased from another beekeeper, treated with Tylan, and/or exposed to three or more more treatments of fluvalinate or amitraz)? *
- Has any wax or comb in your apiary ever been exposed to coumaphos (CheckMite+) or fenpyroximate (Hivastan), or more than six indirect exposures of coumaphos (CheckMite+), hydramethylnon or fipronil (Max Force Gel roach baite) as closed trapping for SHBs?
General Bee Maintenance and Care
- Describe how you maintain your bee population from one season to the next. Do you rely on survivor colonies, incorporate feral colonies, purchase new bees every year, or some combination of these and/or other practices? *
- We rely on survivor colonies to maintain our bee population. We began the apiary in 2013 and have purchased some nucleas colonies from a reputable, natural beekeeper in the area to ensure local queens. I do not anticipate purchasing colonies in the future, although I can't rule that option out.
- Do you sometimes feed the bees when honey supers are on the hive, or within two weeks before honey super addition? *
- If and when your bees require supplemental feeding, what do you feed them? Please be specific and include all ingredients. *
- We sometimes granulated sugar crystals in the winter if needed for a weak colony. We also feed 2:1 sugar syrup (sugar, water) in the Fall if a colony is weak or does not appear to have adequate stores for winter.
Management of Pests and Disease
- Varroa Mite
- Please briefly describe what measures you take to suppress the Varroa mite population in your hives. *
- We monitor mite populations using a screened bottom board and a greased board installed under the screen. We began powdered sugar shakes this year. We did treat one colony with Api Life VAR due to a high concentration of mites in that colony. We did not treat other colonies beyond the powdered sugar shake (corn starch free). We have purchased drone brood frames to install next spring for integrated pest management.
- How do you monitor mite population levels? When and how often? *
- We monitor throughout the season in the spring and fall with a 3 day varroa mite count. We will incorporate drone brood frames next year.
- Before treating any hive for Varroa mites, will you monitor the Varroa mite infestation level to determine whether it exceeds the treatment threshold set by your local network? (If you run a survivor colony, and you never treat, please answer Yes.) *
- If you choose to treat colonies infested with Varroa mites, will you keep records of treatment methods, along with pre- and post-treatment monitoring results? *
- American and European Foulbrood
- How do you prevent and treat American Foulbrood (AFB) and European Foulbrood (EFB)? *
- There is no treatment for AFB and EFB. If it were discovered at our apiary, we would destroy all affected equipment.
- How do you prevent and treat Nosema? *
- We do not treat for Nosema. There is no preventative except healthy bees.
- Other Diseases
- What has been your experience with other diseases (such as chalkbrood, viral diseases, wax moths, small hive beetle)? How have you dealt with them? How will you deal with them if they recur? *
- We have not experiences the diseases listed. We have not had problems with wax moths. We have Freeman Bottom Board oil traps on our colonies which are in the shade. We are learning more about this pest and feel that having healthy colonies in the right size equipment are critical to preventing/managing this pest.
- What measures do you take, if any, to protect the hives against pests such as mice, skunks, possums, raccoons, and bears? *
- We install mouse guards on our hives in the Fall. We have not had any issues with the other animals listed.
- Please describe any other practices you follow to help strengthen the bee population under your care.
- We continue to educate ourselves and help educate the public. We have been involved in teaching the DC Beekeepers Alliance Short Course, giving talks to the public and at work, and attending the Eastern Apiculture Society Conference and Short Course in 2013. We subscribe to Bee Culture Magazine and belong to several clubs in the area. We have a mentor who has been keeping bees for 30+ years. We love our bees and through careful monitoring, integrated pest management and best management practices we plan to have strong bee populations for years to come.
Colonies Engaged in Pollination Services
- Are your colonies engaged in pollination by contract? *
- Are you a part of a local network of beekeepers using natural methods? This could be a formal network like a county beekeepers association, or it could be an informal network of beekeepers in your area with a commitment to using natural methods. *
- If this is a formal network please indicate the name of the network below. (If it is not a formal network, please simply write "informal".) *
- Informal, but includes members of the Bowie-Upper Marlboro Beekeepers Association and the DC Beekeepers Alliance.
- If this is an informal network, please indicate below the names of at least two other beekeepers who participate. They do not need to be CNG beekeepers, but they do need to have some commitment to and knowledge of natural practices. (If you're part of a formal network, please simply write "see above") *
- Elizabeth Hill Toni Burnham Leigh Walton David Clark David Roeder Joseph Buriel See above
- Please indicate your agreement with the following statements by entering your name/s in the spaces following the statements.
- I/we will only use the Certified Naturally Grown name and label on apiary products (honey, pollen, propolis) that are in fact from the CNG apiaries described in this application. *
- Maggie Mills
- I/we understand that CNG beeswax certification is a separate process (not yet available in 2010), and that the basic Apiary Certification doesn't confer CNG status on beeswax. *
- Maggie Mills
- I/we understand the CNG work requirements: A) To complete at least one certification inspection of another CNG apiary in my area each year. B) To arrange at least two annual inspections of my/our apiary, to be carried out by qualified inspectors as outlined in CNG informational materials. *
- Maggie Mills
- I/we have reviewed the Certified Naturally Grown standards, understand them, and will abide by them. I/we understand that if I/we have any questions I/we may contact CNG for clarification. *
- Maggie Mills
- You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm:
- Thank you very much for your consideration. I am currently a participant in the National Farmer Union's Beginning Farmer Institute. I am also in the process of completing the Executive Master Gardener certification through the USDA People's Garden. I have a strong commitment to organic practices. I plan to become a Certified Master Beekeeper at some time in the future. This certification requires 5 years of beekeeping and I have only completed 2.