crop is obtained nearly every year, the average surplus per hive being 75 pounds. All the honey plants are reliable each year, as a rule, except buckwheat. There are not many small yards in this section, which is fully stocked with bees.
In the eastern part of the state there is an important section for beekeeping south of the Mohawk River and west of the Hudson River, including Montgomery, Schenectady, Schoharie, and Albany counties, and the southern portions of Saratoga and Fulton counties. In a circular area 45 miles in diameter, with Schenec-tary County as a center, Charles Stewart estimated that there were, in 1920, over 90,000 colonies of bees. In the spring, bees build up rapidly on willows, maples, dandelion, and fruit bloom; and in summer a surplus is stored from white clover and alsike clover, sumac, basswood, and buckwheat. There are over 40,000 acres of buckwheat besides many large apple-orchards. In southern Fulton and northern Montgomery counties, according to the experience of Charles Stewart, extending over 35 years, 100 pounds of extracted, or 50 pounds of comb honey, is a fair average. In the vicinity of Mayfield, Fulton County, there are 12 commercial apiaries. The surplus per hive may be as low as 20 pounds, and as high as 100 per hive. Usually it ranges from 40 to 60 pounds. At Delanson the Alexander home yard numbers 500 colonies. There are few if any opportunities for establishing new apiaries in this section.
In the counties of Delaware, Otsego, Broome, Chenango, Madison, and Oneida the apiaries range from a few colonies to over 100. The surplus comes chiefly from the clovers, buckwheat, and occasionally partly from basswood and raspberry. The area of buckwheat comprises over 40,000 acres. None of these counties stand in the front rank in the production of honey.
New York is one of the leading states in fruit-growing, and the number of fruit trees under cultivation exceeds twenty-two million. In the southeastern counties of Albany, Columbia, Greene, Dutchess, Ulster, and Orange there are four million fruit trees, largely apple trees. Besides fruit bloom, buckwheat, white clover, alsike clover, sweet clover, basswood, sumac, locust, goldenrod, and aster are valuable sources of nectar. Sweet marjoram (Origanum vulgare) is reported to yield a white honey of fine flavor near Poughkeepsie and in the southern Lake George region.
Fair to good locations may be found in Washington and Rensselaer counties east of the Hudson River, but the soil here is not calcareous. Near Fort Edward, Washington County, there are six apiaries which range from 75 to 200 colonies. A crop is obtained usually eight years out of ten, and in a favorable season the average surplus is about 100 pounds. There are over 3500 colonies in this county. Rensselaer County contains fewer bees, but at Indian Fields there are several commercial apiaries, one of which numbers 200 colonies.
While all of the soils in southern New York, south of the Mohawk Valley, are almost wholly derived from glacial till, a part of them are calcareous, or contain lime, and a part are neutral or acid. A knowledge of these different soil types and the areas they cover will be found very helpful to the beekeeper in locating his apiaries. Lying between the southern boundary of the state and a line drawn from Buffalo to Troy there extends from Lake Erie to the Catskill Mountains and farther northward nearly to the Hudson River a belt of land about 60 miles in width, on which the soils are poor and non-calcareous, either neutral or acid — in some instances quite acid. Throughout this belt the clovers do not prosper, and the secretion of nectar by these plants is less dependable. But buckwheat is grown by the thousands of acres, and is a very reliable yielder of nectar, and the main dependence of the beekeeper.
North of this belt there is a second belt, covered with soils of glacial origin, but containing lime, which extends nearly across the state. In the west it is only about 20 miles wide, but it runs northward along the east end of Lake Erie and south-