Chris readies the smoke to subdue the bees. He dons the bee suit, and I put on the head and face protection. We head over to the grove. Chris injects some smoke into the hive, and we crack the lid open. The bees suddenly become very active, but we’re both in nearly full body armor. Chris explains that the bees tend to build closer to the center of the hive. Several combs are heavy with wax and honey. We remove them, chase the bees with more smoke, and drop them into the large trash bag. In the section beneath the queen excluder, we find one cell with a pupa. This we replace, thinking that there may be more pupae among the other cells.
We bring the three combs inside. Chris shows me how to scrape them into the large baking pan. Then, he sets up a series of three sieves to strain the honey from the wax. We get nearly a gallon of honey! Citrus blossoms with a hint of lavender.