Hi Jean – what a surprising afternoon, today! I was just out from checking the vineyard shoots and soon flowers to be grape clusters in the vineyard behind my house and heard a loud, steady, increasing close hum and my west sky filled with buzzing honey bees. 

Quickly went inside and shut my doors (always open) as coming my way was hundreds, thousands, of native honey bees. 

They swarmed around one of my old cherry trees by my garden (the one with my swing) and within thirty minutes they had settled down and made home on a broken limb of the cherry tree with it’s open cavity. Now they are enclosing themselves into an almost heart shape and a few will venture out and about but most seem to be calm and preparing their new honeycomb. 

Perhaps they knew…there is always fresh water in my many bird bowls, our vineyards are surrounded by mounds of blackberry bushes, organic farming is our way, and my garden of tomatoes, herbs and other vegetables will flourish this year as they are now my close neighbors. It is a sunny day and I will be watching these hive carefully. 

I feel very happy that the bees chose this cherry tree. The tree, and the bees, are close to me every day. What a joy! May 1st! I think that’s a good sign of spring, summer, fall and harvest. – Martha