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Extracting Local Honey From St. Augustine Hives

by August 7, 2019

We started this endeavor to produce local honey from St. Augustine in August of 2018. As we learned more about honey bees and how to best care for them (while staying out of their way) we made the decision not to pull any honey from the hives last Fall. It was a tough decision, but one that we knew was right for our honey bees. As a result, we did not lose any of the seven colonies that we had coming out of Winter. All of the honey bee hives were strong and active heading in to Spring, which has created a milestone for Bee Augustine Honey Co. … OUR FIRST HONEY HARVEST!

Interactive Slideshow

What’s Involved In Extracting Honey?

Inspect hives for frames of honey
Finding frames of honey to pull for extraction can be a little challenging. Take into consideration that we live in Florida and it is June. Add a heavy bee suit and gloves to the mix and now you start to feel a sense of urgency about accomplishing your tasks as quickly as possible in the Summer heat. It is important to find the Queen and ensure that she is not removed from the hive with the frame(s) of honey that you pull for extraction.

Pull the frames
with honey
Once you have identified the frames with honey that you want to pull it is time to prep the frame(s) for extraction. The frame shown in this picture is a deep frame (larger than a super frame) and weighs around 10 pounds. We utilize the frame grip to get a good handle on this frame because of its weight.

Store the honey
for extraction
The next step is to get the honey bees off of the frame, which requires a little patience. There are many methods of accomplishing this but we use a bee brush to remove them. Once the frame is clean of honey bees we place the frames of honey in a plastic storage bin and cover the top.

Uncap wax from
the frames
The wax capping needs to be removed in order to get the honey out of the combs. In this video, we use an electric carving knife to remove a thin layer of the wax capping before placing it in the extractor. These frames are then cleaned up by the honey bees and placed back into the hives for the bees to continue to use.

Spin and strain
the honey
The frames are now placed into the extractor where centrifugal force is used to spin the honey out of the cells. A strainer and a food grade container are placed under the extractor spigot to strain and catch the honey.

Bottle the honey
for consumption
The honey needs to rest until all of the air bubbles have escaped. After the honey has rested for about twelve hours it is time to place it into the jars. We then place our label on the jar and make sure that it is clean and ready to go.

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Bee Augustine Honey Co. is dedicated to producing healthy local honey from St. Augustine. All of our honey is straight from our hives. Our apiaries produce delicious St. Augustine honey with three distinctive tastes and characteristics to choose from, each one representing the location and neighborhood where it was created.

We are passionate about being beekeepers in St. Augustine and we take great pride in the care that we provide for our honey bees. Local residents and neighbors are excited, too! While their gardens increase in productivity, their flowers and trees are directly contributing to the flavors of our local honey from St. Augustine.

Want Some Local Honey?

The Shores

Alpha and Bravo hives are located in The St. Augustine Shores and feature lots of pollinators and flowers.

Buy Local Honey

The South

Charlie hive is located in The South and has access to incredible native Florida plants and flowers.

Buy Local Honey

The Nursery

Our Delta, Echo, Foxtrot, Golf, Hotel, India, Juliet and Kilo hives are located on a 45 acre nursery.

Buy Local Honey

Get To Know Bee Augustine Honey Co.

by June 1, 2019

Bee Augustine Honey Co. officially launched on January 1, 2019 with plans of providing local residents with St. Augustine honey in Summer 2019. The St. Augustine based honey company has been overwhelmed with the support that they have received from local residents and look forward to their first honey harvest this Summer.

How Many Apiaries Does Bee Augustine Honey Co. Have?

Bee Augustine Honey Co. currently has three apiaries; two apiaries located in St. Augustine and another apiary located on a 45 acre thriving nursery. Because honey bees typically forage for nectar and resources within a five mile radius, the multiple locations enable Bee Augustine Honey Co. to provide customers with several flavors of local honey and in most cases, directly from their neighborhoods.

Painted bee boxes awaiting their new honey bee occupants

Why Did You Decide To Become Beekeepers?

We started researching beekeeping in St. Johns County and quickly decided that we wanted to raise honey bees and grow our own local honey. Honey Bees pollinate up to 80% of the world’s plants and food crops and some experts say that one out of every three bites of food that we consume depends on them. The honey bees plight has been well documented over the past ten years, as beekeepers have been losing honey bee colonies at an alarming rate. So, it was an easy decision for us to become beekeepers. As we increase honey bee hives in St. Augustine, we hope to increase awareness about the relationship between honey bees and their role in helping the environment around us and them.

Our Beekeepers

Chris Glochau Bee Augustine Honey Co.
Chris Glochau

Martha Yamnitz

Dave Hall Bee Augustine Honey Co.
Dave Hall

The response from local residents has been overwhelming. When they hear that we have honey bee hives they are genuinely excited and immediately want to buy some.

Martha Yamnitz, Co-Founder | Beekeeper

When Will You Have Local Honey From St. Augustine?

We did not extract honey from our honey bee hives in 2018 to ensure that they had enough resources to survive the Winter. That means that we should have delicious local honey from St. Augustine in Summer 2019.

local st. augustine honey
A frame of honey bees in St. Augustine, Fl.

Want Some Local Honey?

Bee Augustine Honey Co. is proud to provide our friends, family, local residents and visitors to the Nation’s oldest City with 100% pure local honey from St. Augustine. If you are interested in reserving some of our local honey, please enter your information below and we will let you know when the Summer 2019 Harvest is ready for you.

bee augustine honey company
Bee Augustine Honey Co. founders pictured left to right; Martha Yamnitz, Dave Hall & Chris Glochau

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