September 2022 Newsletter

MHBA 2022 Annual Banquet

Let’s celebrate!!!

We have put together a fun evening at the
Science Museum, 120 Kellogg Blvd, St. Paul, MN

October 15th starting at 6:00 pm. 

Admission to the museum will be included for those pre-registered and their guests. Come earlier and tour the museum before dinner.

Dinner, cash bar and a fundraiser auction to follow.

All proceeds from the auction will go to the University of Minnesota Bee Lab.
Please bring your bee-related auction items to the banquet... we will have people to help you.

Members $35 - Non Members $40
Please see registration options below.

Tickets are limited! Get yours today!

All registrations must be received by October 1st, 2022

Thank you for registering!

No refunds for cancellations.

President's Hive

I hope everyone has had a chance to visit The Minnesota State Fair this year, especially the Bee and Honey Exhibit. Thanks to Superintendent Alex King and his team of volunteers, workers and judges, the exhibit was a huge success. It’s always exciting to see all the honey bee food-related entries: cookies, pies, salad dressings, the creativity and artistry not to mention beautiful wax comb and jars of honey. People are very clever and industrious! Many thanks to the enthusiastic and countless MHBA volunteers who spent many tireless hours assisting judges, scribing, organizing, and beautifully displaying every single entry. Also there is nothing more thrilling than chatting with the many awestruck visitors who come to learn about honey bees and have a chance to look at our observation hives and watch an extraction demonstration, coordinated by board member Terry McDaniel, or witness a Bee Beard conducted by Gary Reuter. Again, much of this was accomplished by the work of many MHBA volunteers! Thank you volunteers! 

Our August MHBA picnic was a blast! There were 75+ attendees who enjoyed a wonderful picnic dinner orchestrated by Kate Winsor and committee. There was also the delicious ice cream from the University of MN, fun games, great conversations and reconnecting with fellow beekeepers and meeting some new ones.

We are pleased to welcome back James Wolfin from Twin City Seed for our September 13th speaker. James will be talking about Bee Lawns which may seem like a strange topic for this time of year. However, it turns out that the planning and seeding ideally takes place in fall or early spring. Ultimately a monoculture green grass lawn can be turned into a pollinator smorgasbord, requiring less maintenance! Bees everywhere are saying: ”We need more healthy food!”

As the beekeeping season begins to wind down, what social event do we have to look forward to next? Other than bottling, candling, meading, what am I missing?. Why the ANNUAL BANQUET, of course! This year's Banquet will be on October 15th at the Science Museum of Minnesota in St. Paul. You won’t want to miss this splendid evening, so register now. The October 1st deadline is fast approaching!    

Elections for MHBA Board of Directors is approaching. The second Tuesday of the month is November 8th the United States Election Day so our members' meeting is the third Tuesday November 15th. The MHBA Board is a great way to get involved in our association to collaborate with other fun and enthusiastic beekeepers that work hard to keep the association running smoothly for our members. We’d love to have your skills and talents added to the board by submitting the Nomination Form for Board Director. If you haven’t already. Visit our Get Involved page on the website then in the third category click on: Board of Directors Nomination Form. It brings you right to it. The deadline for submissions is October 26th. 

I hope that you and your bees are doing well!

I hope to see everyone at our Hive Demonstration and Meeting on September 13th, and at the Banquet October 15th!

Susan Bornstein
[email protected]

Better Beekeeping Through Education

Next Meeting
Tuesday, September 13th, 7:00 PM
Hybrid meeting:
In-Person: Room B45 Ruttan Hall
(Masks Recommended)
Via Zoom: Meeting Link

Hive Demo

Tuesday, September 13th, 5:45 PM
In-Person: Research Apiary
(Veils Required)
(Masks Recommended)
Via Zoom: Demo Link

Click here for directions.

Upcoming Events

9/13 @ 7 PM
Member Meeting

James Wolfin with Lawns to Legumes.

10/11 @ 7 PM
Member Meeting

Meghan Milbrath with the University of Michigan.


Minnesota Science Museum.
Director ELECTIONS., BUDGET, Youth Scholarship presentations

Hospitality Chair

The MHBA is seeking a Hospitality Chair. We hope to eventually return to providing refreshments at our meetings, however we are in need of a Hospitality Chair!

Responsibilities include:

  • Preparing coffee and lemonade for in person meetings.
  • Monthly securing member volunteers to provide treats such as cookies and bars
  • Organizing cups, napkins, paper plates and supplies as needed.

Interested? Please contact Susan Bornstein [email protected]

Hive Management

September Management

The fair is over. Congratulations to all that entered.

The honey flow is over for the most part in the Twin Cities area. The supers should be taken off this month (if not already done) and any necessary mite treatments completed. Then it is time to get your colonies ready for winter.

Let’s review what the bees need to get through winter.

1.  A good population of healthy bees. If you have your bees in 2 or 3 deeps they should cover at least 7 frames when they are in a loose cluster. If the colony does not have enough bees, it is a little late to do anything about it. I am often asked about combining colonies that have low populations. I don’t think you should ever combine a weak colony into a healthy colony. It will be no help to the strong colony and may be detrimental depending on why the weak one is so small. You probably have nothing to lose if you have two weak colonies and want to combine them for winter.

2.  Enough honey stores in the right place. So how much is enough and what is the right place? If you have managed your bees in a 3 deep as described in Beekeeping in Northern Climates everything will probably be fine. First, how much is enough? Seventy to 100 pounds of honey for winter. This is 7-10 full deep frames of honey. If you can weigh your colony, a 3 deep colony should weigh at least 175 pounds and a 2 deep colony at least 150 pounds. Where should the stored honey be? The best place is in the beehive. Ideally, the top box would have 9 frames of honey. The center 2 frames should have either some empty cells or uncapped honey.. The next box down should have the remainder of the honey toward the outside of the box with the center frames containing any brood and pollen. The bottom box (in a 3 deep colony) should have all the remaining frames. If the colony does not have enough honey, then feed 2:1 sugar syrup until they have enough. If a colony is light, then start to feed now! The bees will not draw out the foundation this time of year. If you have frames of foundation in the top box move them to the bottom box and replace them with drawn comb in the top box for the bees to put the syrup into.

3.  Disease and mite free. Again, if you have been doing proper management all summer this should not be a problem. If you have not managed your mites do so NOW! See last month’s management article.

4.  A wind break on the north side. This should have been planned for when you placed the hive. If not, then provide something as a windbreak (i.e. straw bales, an old car on cement blocks, etc).

5.  An upper entrance, moisture board, and winter cover. For the upper entrance remove the cork from the top box and put corks in the bottom boxes. The entrance reducer should be in with the large entrance facing up. A piece of screen or metal on the entrance reducer can prevent mice from chewing on it. Wait to put the moisture board and winter wrap on until the daytime temps are consistently below 50 and before it snows. Usually the end of October in the Twin Cities metro.

To have a colony with a good population of healthy bees, you need the winter bees to develop without being parasitized by varroa mites. If you have not tested for varroa mite levels do so now. Instructions for the powder sugar test can be found on the University Of Minnesota’s  website  then click on Poster 175: Sampling Colonies for Varroa Destructor. Or invest in the Bee Squad varroa mite test kit. If a colony has more than 2 mites per 100 bees, apply a varroa mite treatment. Before treating, read the directions, if required, remove the supers before applying any treatment. Use registered treatments and follow the instructions. Be sure to look at the temperature requirements treatments and the effect on the bees when you choose a treatment. Start the treatment as soon as possible to have healthy bees going into winter. Be sure to test for mites again after treatment to be sure it worked.

Be careful not to let robbing start when feeding. Robbing can start with a few spills of sugar syrup, leaky buckets and leaving honey frames outside the colony for too long. If a colony is getting robbed, close all entrances including holes or cracks in the boxes. Put the entrance reducer on the 3” opening. Cover the front of the hive with a wet sheet. Leave it loose on the sides so the home bees can get in and out.

Reproduction of all or part of this article without the author’s permission is prohibited.



We are busy, busy bees planning our annual banquet & fundraising auction for 2022! It will be held on October 15th at the Science Museum in St. Paul. All proceeds from the auction will go to the UMN Bee Lab’s Scholarship Fund. So, start saving your bee & honey-related items to donate.

I welcome volunteers to help! Please let me know if you are interested at [email protected].

See registration information in the article at the top of the newsletter.

- Ginger Reuter, Banquet Committee Chair


Your Classified Here

Did you know your membership allows you to place classified ads in the MHBA Newsletter?

Click here for details.

MHBA Board of Directors Elections is Tuesday November 15th

We are currently looking forward to receiving nominations for Directors whose terms are expiring. Director Elections will be held on November 15th during the meeting. Submissions are due by October 26. There are great reasons to consider volunteering as a Director on the MHBA board:

  • An opportunity to be a part of running an association that you love 
  • Add to sweetening up your resume
  • Gain and develop important leadership skills
  • Donate your time, talent and skills to a worthy non prophet association 
  • Meet and collaborate with other wonderful beekeepers
  • Vote on important topics discussed at board meetings
  • Once a director you have possibilites to run for an officer position in the future

The board has been meeting monthly, currently via Zoom during the Covid-19 pandemic. Once all is safe we'll be meeting at the Bee Lab in person. By joining the board you can help steer programming and the content of speakers for the meetings, be on one of our many significant committees: membership, technology, hospitality, newsletter, swarm catchers, library,  state fair extracting, community outreach, banquet, youth scholarship, the August picnic, etc.

MHBA is full of talented, hardworking individuals, and YOU can help make the organization the best it can be!  Help us make a meaningful difference during these challenging times by doing something that makes you feel good by keeping this fantastic association buzzing!

A Director is a three-year term. Check out the bylaws to learn more about how the association works and if you haven’t already, fill out the Board of Directors Nomination Form here then click on the Board of Directors Nomination Form. It brings you right to it. The deadline is October 26, 2022.

Photos from the MN State Fair 2022

Photos are by Terry McDaniel except for the one of Terry which is by Alex King.

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

Email a photo to Gary Reuter at [email protected] before noon on the day of the member's meeting so he can project it on the screen during “Ask the Expert.” We will all learn from you what you see in your hive.


Online Resources

Please visit our website!
We continue to make updates and changes to our website. Recently, we reorganized the Education page.
Stay tuned for no-cost Community-based beekeeping classes & events in the new calendar:
If you are offering a class/event, you may submit the details to have it listed on our website:

Join Us On Facebook
Join our members only Facebook group:
This is a place for members to ask questions, share answers, share photos and videos, and socialize online.

MHBA Board Minutes
Please check the website for the latest, approved Board meeting minutes.

More Announcements

Membership Renewal
There are three ways to renew your membership today!

  1. Renew your membership online with a credit card (preferred).
  2. Mail the membership renewal form to our treasurer at the address provided
  3. Renew in person by bringing your completed form and check to the next meeting.

Our Renewal Form can be found at our Become a Member page:

Newsletter Submissions
The MHBA newsletter welcomes articles, photos, recipes, etc. from members. Please send them to the editor:
[email protected]

If an article is a reprint from another source, permission must be gained if required. The due date for newsletter submission is the 25th of the month for the next month's newsletter.

MHBA Board

Position Member
President Susan Bornstein
Vice President Alex King
Secretary Kat Gardner
Treasurer Bill Thompson
Technology Committee Quintin Holmberg
Alex King
Danny Kraft
Gary Reuter
Membership Steve Buck
Newsletter Editor Quintin Holmberg
Stacy Anderson
Steve Buck
Quintin Holmberg
Paula Johnson
Danny Kraft
Terry McDaniel
Betty Mortensen
Gary Reuter
Sarah Staten
Kate Winsor
Katie Lee, PhD. (appointed)

Get Involved

Make 2022 the year to get more involved in your club! To become a Community Outreach volunteer or a Swarm Chaser please complete and submit the appropriate form by visiting:

NOTE: The contents of this Newsletter are the sole property of the Minnesota Hobby Beekeepers Association (MHBA). NO REPUBLICATION OR USE in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, by any other person or entity without the prior express written permission from MHBA’s Board of Directors is permitted. MHBA may be contacted at [email protected]

September 2022 Newsletter