acreage of alsike clover is steadily increasing, and sweet clover is also becoming common. Basswood is important in localities; and fruit-bloom, dandelion, and heartsease deserve mention. Owing to liberal annual appropriations the state is to-day largely free from foul brood. The white-clover region includes some 38 counties; but the counties of Indiana are small. A beekeeper living at New Ross, Montgomery County, who has 52 colonies, writes that the crop of honey is secured from white clover, alsike clover, heartsease, basswood, and wild aster. Minor honey plants are dandelion, raspberry, fruit bloom, haw, sweet clover, milkweed, black locust, maples, melons, and tulip tree. The clovers yield nectar four years in five; but basswood is unreliable, and heartsease depends on the rainfall in late June and July. The clovers usually bloom from four to six weeks; but in 1915 young clover began blooming in August and continued to bloom until killing frosts. There were no old clover plants that year. Bees were swarming in September.
Returning to Henry County, in the east central portion of this region, we find that three-fifths of the land is covered with cereals and forage, and that fruit trees also occupy a large area. In the central portion of the state 95 per cent, of the land is in farms. Beekeeping receives a fair share of attention. The honey plants are red maple, dandelion, fruit bloom, and black locust (March 1 to June 1); white clover (June 1 to July 20); sweet clover (July 10 to August 30); heartsease and asters (September 1 to October 30). Only small yards can be maintained without overstocking. Around Indianapolis, Marion County, there is a large number of small yards. The average surplus in a good year is 75 to 100 pounds, and at least a partial crop is obtained every year from white clover, alsike clover, and sweet clover. During the past 10 years the amount of honey produced in this county has doubled.
South of Indianapolis the counties in the white-clover region generally report fewer colonies and a smaller amount of honey. A beekeeper at Dillboro, Dearborn County, who keeps from 20 to 50 colonies, in a good year secures from sweet clover, honey locust, white clover, and aster 100 or more pounds of surplus, but in a poor year only about 25 pounds. The summers in southern Indiana are so hot and dry that white clover secretes nectar much less freely than northward. Moreover, white clover is confined largely to land not under tillage, and this area is very small in many southern counties. For example, the area of Fayette County is 138,000 acres, of which, in 1920, 133,000 were in farms; and of 103,000 acres comprising Union County, 100,000 acres were in farms.
Southern Indiana was not glaciated, and the soils are derived partly by the weathering of the underlying rocks, and partly from a thin deposit of fine material known as loess, which largely covers this region. These silty soils are better adapted to growing winter wheat, oats, and grass than to corn, which is by far the most important crop in the central states. Beekeepers usually divide southern Indiana into three parts — a southeast, a south-central, and a southwest section.
In the southeastern section the honey plants are redbud, fruit bloom, black locust, white locust, white clover, sweet clover, goldenrod, and aster. A beekeeper at Madison, Jefferson County, writes: “We have depended largely in the past on sweet clover; but during the last few years it has been disappointing, largely because it is pastured too closely.” Black locust is so common in this section that it is an important source of surplus. The more important honey plants of south-central Indiana are white clover, alsike clover, sweet clover, goldenrod, and aster; but there are many wild nectar-bearing flowers, as willow, maple, locust, dandelion, raspberry, sumac, and Spanish needles. Along the creek bottoms much nectar goes to waste, and bee culture would be profitable on a small scale.