Branch Valley Farm ApiaryOwner: John DiSanto
720 Haldeman Rd
Schwenksville, PA 19473
daytime phone: (610) 287-4410
evening phone: (610) 287-4410
Web site: http://www.branchvalleyfarm.com
Application Date: 2019-06-13
- Please briefly tell us why you are applying to have your apiary be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program. *
- To set us apart from other honey producers that use chemicals to raise their bees.
- 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? *
- From local farms
- 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).
- How many hives are in your apiary (or apiaries)? *
- 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. *
- 720 Haldeman Road, Schwenksville, PA 19473
- Briefly describe the landscape where the apiary is located. What surrounds the apiary? What are the nectar sources? *
- Wooded, wild meadow, natural landscapes. Maple, black locust, clover, wild cherry, golderod.
- 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? *
- Use this space to describe any land management practices you use to support the honey bee population. *
- Wild preserved conservation area. White clover cover crops.
- 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 pull any old, dark or irregular comb and replace yearly with fresh frames.
- 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)? *
- 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? *
- Survivor colonies and feral colonies
- 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. *
- Cane sugar
Management of Pests and Disease
- Varroa Mite
- Please briefly describe what measures you take to suppress the Varroa mite population in your hives. *
- Strategic Oxalic Acid treatments when there are no honey supers on
- How do you monitor mite population levels? When and how often? *
- Screened bottom boards
- 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)? *
- We have not had to ever treat for either. But we would cull and burn the colony if it comes up.
- How do you prevent and treat Nosema? *
- We have never been affected by it
- 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? *
- The colonies are maintained in a robust condition and have been able to take care of themselves. We requeen if we see anything we don't like
- What measures do you take, if any, to protect the hives against pests such as mice, skunks, possums, raccoons, and bears? *
- Mouse guards, colonies are strapped to their hive stand
- Please describe any other practices you follow to help strengthen the bee population under your care.
- Try to maintain adequate healthy populations in every hive.
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".) *
- Montgomery County Beekeepers Association of PA
- 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") *
- Scott Famous
- 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. *
- John DiSanto
- 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. *
- John DiSanto
- 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. *
- John DiSanto
- 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. *
- John DiSanto
- You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm: