If my lazy wife would ever do a blog post, you could take a break ("Honey! The baby is crying again!"). As it is, here I am again still picking up the pieces from the corn planting discovery. I have learned some lessons:
-If you're going to spout off about something, it's best to stick to one issue. Namely, the most concerning one. For me, it's the bees. Sorry I sidetracked.
-When spouting off, get your facts straight. Be 100% sure, as my brother said.
-No more sneaky pictures without permission. That was low of me and I still can't shake a rotten feeling of breached trust.
-On a blog like this, it's fine to have opinions (especially if they're always right, like mine), but I'll be toning it down in certain areas. My mental health takes a beating when people are mad at me. I'll never go into politics. Or back to teaching.
That post touched a nerve with many people. And a few of the right people. It culminated in a little publicity on WBNS-10TV
Another lesson: I need a haircut.
So my cousin Adam is on board for another bee / corn planting experiment. I have another bee yard that sits right on a field due to be planted as soon as it dries up. Probably next week. I put cardboard beneath the entrances today. The bees seem healthy and plenty of pollen was coming into the hives as I watched.
This time a new flowable seed surfactant will be used in the planter boxes... instead of talc or graphite. They ordered it special for me. I am truly grateful. And interested to see if anything changes.
A side experiment will be going on also. In the background you can see how covered this field is with the yellow wild mustard. It will have to be burned down with (I think) 2-4D. I'll find out for sure.
I have in the past claimed that 2-4D has no adverse effects on bees. This is based on my observations over years of spraying on the golf course and having bees in close vicinity. Many beekeepers say I'm wrong.
We'll see what we see.
My hypothesis: we won't see dead bees with the initial 2-4D burn down, but after the corn gets planted, we'll see much of what we saw before... definite pesticide kill. I hope I'm wrong, but think this new product is just lip service to quiet the screams of pollinator protection advocates.
So we're set up and ready. I'm grateful and happy to have the farmers helping in this. Regardless of what happens, I'll fill you in on the results.
"It's about science, Mason!"