Saturday, January 1, 2011

Planning @ Plan Bee

In January we decided it would be a good month to do some planning.  The name for the month of January comes to us from the Julian Calendar.  January was named after the Roman pagan deity Janus, a two headed deity.  One of its heads looked back and the other looked forward.

LOOKING BACK on 2010 - We decided first to look back at our accomplishments on Plan Bee.
  • May 19, 2010 - Purchased 6985 Bowman Dairy Road, Liberty , NC (aka Plan Bee).

  • June 6, 2010 - 24' bee stand installed.
  • June 10, 2010 - Installed pipes and gravel over culvert allowing us on to the land without breaking an axle.

  •  July, 2010 Well - Signed paperwork in July and actually received final paperwork that we could drink the water in December 2010.

  • July 18, 2010 - Picnic Shelter started and eventually constructed using cedar poles from the land, some purchased 1"x2" and salvaged aluminum corrogated roofing. 

  • July 18, 2010 - Outhouse project started. 
  •  August 2010 - Electric installed via Duke Energy to power well pump and to use power tools.
  • September 11, 2010 - Moved our 2 hives of bees on to Plan Bee from Charlotte, NC
  • October 2010 - Our first deer harvested via a bow.  Nice shooting son.
  • November 19, 2010 - Plan Bee fully surveyed.

Most of the work was done by my son and his friends with my wife and I assisting in completing some of the projects that required  continuous follow up such as the well and well inspection.  Yep, my son spent a lot of time in the heat of the summer working and getting things started.

As we think about Plan Bee, we are fortunate to have very low expenses.  We do have to pay for electric and government (taxes)  Therefore as we had planned all along, we need to generate income to at least cover these minimal expenses and yet not lose sight of all of the fun of owning 23.58 acres in a rural community. 

Here are some goals for 2011:

  • January 15, 2011 (Begun) - Develop Land Plan that can be used when considering planting trees, herbs and flowers as well as tax implications.
    • Timber some of the property to make way for more productive trees and vegetation.  Will hopefully generate revenue.
    • Make sure plan will allow us to achieve Present Use Value in 3 years (2014)
  • Continue to expand our bee yard. We now have 2 hives and can grow the number up to 25.
    • Add at least 2 hives this year.
    • Harvest honey from our hives or fire the bees and get a new bunch for next year.
    • Complete work on new hive stands pointed to the Southeast (Optimum direction for bees)
  • Continue to plant fruit trees for us and the bees. (Bees need trees and Trees need bees)
    • Trees we want to plant - PawPaw, apple, fig, peach, Mulberry, others to be named
  • Plant 6 grape vines and evaluate if a vineyard is possible. (Attending a NCMGA (North Carolina Muscadine Growers Association) meeting
  • Water Improvement:
    • Install yard hydrant for year around water.
    • Install drip irrigation system for garden, trees, herbs and bees.
  • Build tool shed for storage of equipment.
  • Plant Moroccan Mint

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