We had a day in Newcastle upon Tyne today to go to the North of England Beekeepers' Convention. Seminars were held on the effects of agricultural insecticides on bees presented by a researcher from Newcastle University; beekeeping in Denmark; bee foraging areas throughout the year and what to plant in urban areas to support pollinators (latter two by a researcher at Sussex University). There was some interesting stuff and the speaker from Denmark in particular gave us some food for thought in terms of how to avoid swarming (of which we had lots last year though that was probably a result of the odd weather conditions).
Speaking of the weather, BBC Gardeners' Question Time was meant to be recorded immediately after the Convention but it was cancelled as the presenter, Eric Robson, was stuck at him home in Cumbria because of the snow. We have largely escaped the snow on Tyneside but it is bitterly cold. So much for the arrival of spring. We had tickets to be in the Gardeners' QT audience and I even had a question written out. Better luck next time, I hope.