"Free Range Bees"

Rohe Bee Ranch

Equipment - The Bee Yard

At the Rohe Bee Ranch we use a wide variety of equipment; from home made items to specially manufactured, one of a kind items.  This section describes the different types of equipment we use at the ranch.  All of this equipment can be easily purchased from a number of beekeeping catalogs or can be easily fabricated by the home beekeeper.

Bee hives, supers, hive stands, pigs, etc

I like to be creative and have fun with decorating and painting my bee hives and supers.  I like to make them colorful and entertaining, not just for the bees, but for me and the neighbors.  I use pine dovetailed deep hive bodies and shallow supers with divided bottom bar frames along with wooden bottom boards and inner covers.  I top these off with plastic outer covers. I  purchase these items from Kelly.  They make a good, sturdy, and reasonably priced product and I have never had any problems with anything I have purchased from them.


I make hive stands out of 2x6 and 4x4 pressure treated (PT) lumber.  The dimensions are 8 or 6 feet long by 19 inches deep by 18 inches tall.  This keeps the hives safely off the ground and away from skunks and reduces the strain on my back by not having to bend down so far.  I nail a PT 1x2 on top of the back rail that tips the hives forward slightly to help with draining water out and off of the hive.  I place these stands on leveled concrete pavers.

I also made some portable hive/super supports.  These are used for temporarily placing hives or supers onto while you are working the hive instead of placing them on the bare ground.  My daughter calls these supports “pigs” because I had just painted a bunch of them pink (Oops paint from the local Home Depot) and had them drying in the back yard.  She said they looked like a small herd of pigs standing out there and the name has stuck ever since.  We now even decorate them with pig faces and tails.  These supports are made out of scrap pressure treated lumber.  They are 18 inches high and are in a triangle shape and can support one full deep hive body. with some room to spare for tools or frames.


Copyright Rohe Bee Ranch & Dale Rohe September 2001.  All Rights Reserved.  Free Range Bees copyright September 2001.