You can’t have cranberries without bees! Bees are an essential part of our operations here at Edgewood Bogs. Every year the local bees as well as migrating bee hives brought to the bogs come and pollinate our beautiful blooms to aid in the cranberry growing process. The local bees cannot cover our extensive land alone so we need outside bees too! It’s pretty incredible pulling off the highway and seeing the hundreds of hives stacked in a local field waiting to be delivered to their specific bog. Afterall we are in “Cranberry Country” where there is a bog in every direction!
We source our bees from two different companies. The first is our cousin Roger’s company - The Franklin Honey Bee Company. The company is based out of Franklin, MA. They offer a variety of bee products like honey, honey comb, candles, soaps, and even wooden hives so you can set up your own bees in your yard. The honey that is in our seasonal gift box line is from Franklin Honey. It’s great having another family member involved in our operations. After all, our family has been growing cranberries for over 75 years.
The second company we source from is Wonderful Bees. Wonderful Bees is a large operation that sets up bee hives all over the nation aiding in pollinating almonds, cranberries, blueberries, apples, and more.
The bees arrive in Carver, MA in June just as the cranberry vines begin to bloom. A lot of the bees brought to Carver were just pollinating blueberries in Maine! They stay until early July and then they are moved to another farm for the next crop ready for pollination.
It’s incredible what those little bees can do in such a short amount of time and we are thankful for them. Without bees, crop production would decline substantially. The bees not only pollinate our food but also the trees that provide homes for wildlife and pollinate cotton for our clothes and alfalfa which is used for feed for animals that provide us with meat. There are upwards of 200,000 different pollinator species in the world; however honeybees are the most efficient. Honeybees can visit 2,000 flowers per day making them quite impressive and efficient pollinators and our ideal pollinators for our bogs.
After the bees leave our farm the cranberries begin to go into the “fruit set” phase. We continue to water and nurture the cranberries as they grow until they are ready to harvest in early October. Want to read more about the Cranberry Life Cycle? We have a blog post about that too - Click Here.
Important bee information!
If you have an issue with bees at your house contact a local beekeeper before contacting an extermination company. Bees are so important to our environment and many beekeepers can rehome the bees rather than exterminate them! Local to Franklin, MA? Email FranklinHoney3@gmail.com with a photo, description and location of the hive or swarm near your home and they will be in touch.