Where is the Honey Lager?
July 10, 2007

The weather man called it a "two chili pepper day,"--hot but not too hot. I made sure I arrived at the gardens early to set up when it was a bit cooler. I took the plastic bags off of Ken Gregory's Sun Suckers as they chirped at me like the eager little crickets they are. The gardeners were working hard in the heritage vegetable garden, which now has handsome trellises for the beans and peas. Many people have asked me what the gardens with do with the vegetables once they are harvested. Most of them will go to a charitable organization, and a fraction of the harvest will be given to the onsite restaurant.

As I was setting up the tent a honeybee came and explored the canvas. I let her crawl on my hand before she flew away.

The bees were the busiest I've seen them yet. The nectar was obviously flowing well because the hummingbirds were also very active this afternoon. They love that twinberry bush! Diana and I watched as the sun sparked the metallic green off the hummingbirds back. These hummingbirds can be very vocal. I hear them squeaking before I see them, and they are often silent when they gather nectar. They like to perch in the branches of a dead tree by the twinberry bush and squabble with each other over foraging rights.

I talked with a very funny man of German decent who is obviously a regular visitor to the gardens. (He knows where all the best berry bushes are.) He kept asking me if I had a cooler of Honey Lager in my tent. He said that when he was a child during WWII the local beekeeper allowed to boys to eat honey and bee larva straight from the comb. The boys were hungry and although they teased one other and dared each other to eat the grubs, they were hungry enough to appreciate the kind offer.

If everything goes as planned from three to five thousand kids will soon have a late night party at the gardens to celebrate the release of the final book in the Harry Potter series. By the way, did you know that "Dumbledore" is an Old English word for bee?