Thursday, April 21, 2016

In memory of Bruce Amundson

New hives for 2016
Quite a few years ago my friend Terry Kienitz out a couple hives of honeybees on my property. He was living in Champlin and was interested in having his own honey.  Well, Terry eventually moved and lost interest in having bee's at my place however another guy from Champlin, Bruce Amundson contacted me and asked if I was interested in having bees on my property as I had done this before.  Because of my apple orchard and garden I enthusiastically answered yes as bees are just the ticket for a prosperous garden.   I had a bunch of stuff left over from working with Terry and after seeing Bruce was serious about this I simply gave him everything I had as it was in my best interest to have Bruce be successful and successful he was!  Eventually he got his two daughters involved and Bruce's wife Joni helped.  Along the way they lost their young son to an unfortunate accident when he was at camp and I know that the bee's helped Bruce to keep his mind occupied during those long summers.  The bee's are great.  I always had a great raspberry crop, my pickles were plentiful and my apples and pears got the pollination needed to be extremely fruitful.  I do remember one time my neighbor's wife expressed some concern asking me once......."do you still have bees down below?"  I replied Yes, why?  "Well", she sighed, "it seems I have bees all over my flowers and it is somewhat nerve racking.   I asked if they were the big yellow ones with the black marks on them.  "Why of course, they really make me nervous" she exclaimed.  I smiled telling her that those are not my bees, honeybees are smaller, they look almost like flies and she had bumble bees, probably they lived right in the ground by her flowers.  She wasn't happy but that's ok, never argue with a small town guy who was trained by the likes of my dad, grandpa, Gyle Tollefson and almost every farmer in town.  You see even at Wenaas's Garage where I worked, Vic would give me petunia's every Memorial day to plant and each year I would bet Joanne that mine would be nicer than hers at home.  She stopped betting with me!  It is a sad year but Bruce passed away this March, Bruce's obituary however to my delight his two daughters are keeping the tradition alive and put 2 new hives behind my place.  Not only do I get some honey at the end of the year but my garden and orchard get the benefit and everytime I look in the back and see those white towers, It reminds me of Bruce.  God Bless him for sure as Bruce was a good man.

Ricky Shermer at his finest.
So the beautiful weather has given me the opportunity to get my garden tilled extra early this spring. It has been somewhat dry so last weekend my good friend Ricky Shermer came over with his Kubota and 3 point tiller and really gave the garden a good scrub.  Ricky really reminds me of back home and Jerry O'Kroley as he showed up in the afternoon with the tractor and wearing only his bibs!  Like Jerry, the side buttons were undone as he worked the garden.  I had seen him earlier in the day and we agreed that it would be a couple of days then just like that, he showed up and did mine, what a great deal.  All I had to do was make sure we had enough beer to keep him satisfied.  It's really nice to have this done and does it ever do a great job of grinding everything up.  I don't want plant stuff too early as we have had late frosts in the past however I am waiting for my onions to arrive from Texas and now I am ready to plant those as it's the earlier the better for them.  I am getting to realize that my garden may be too big.  One person's theory of that is simply plant pumpkins and let them utilize the space, maybe that's a good idea as I could give them to the neighborhood kids this fall.  Either way I'll be looking for ways to reduce my overall work load, maybe go fishing more!

This spring is really progressing.  The leaves are starting to come out, the ice is off Leech Lake and the nightcrawlers are out.  I am working on putting Structure Scan 3D in my boat however the transducer doesn't look to fun to install but somehow I will get it figured out.  I have got most of the updates to my fishing electronics done however there is still a nagging problem with my new Ipod and it's going to drive me crazy.  Oh well, luckily I have enough smart people at work that can get me out of this jam!


Duane said...

To heck with the neighborhood kids! I'll take all the pumpkins you want to get rid of.

Laura said...

too bad you werent growing pumpkins the year were tested out my dads trebuchet!

thats great that you have bees for your trees!