the Rocky Mountain honey plant in a dry saline soil; the black mangrove and salt-marsh goldenrod in a soil and atmosphere impregnated with salt, while fireweed springs up in profusion on burnt land.
The effect of climate on the period of blooming is well shown by the average dates of the beginning and ending of the blooming period of the principal honey plants. In Mississippi and Louisiana white clover and alsike clover bloom from April 15 to June 5-15; in Maryland and Virginia from May 20 to July 5; in New England from June 10 to July 20. Sweet clover in Alabama and Mississippi blooms from May 15 to the end of August. In New England it blooms from July 10-20 to August 20-25. Fruit trees in Texas and Alabama begin blooming April 10-15, and end May 1-10; in New England they bloom from May 15-30 to June 1-15. Alfalfa in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Nevada begins blooming May 20, and ends September 1-30; in Nebraska, Wyoming, and Colorado it blooms from June 15 to September 1. Basswood blooms in Kentucky and Tennessee from June 15 to June 30; in New England from July 10 to July 25. Goldenrod and aster, which throughout the eastern United States bloom from midsummer until late autumn, are less affected by climate. The time of blooming of the plants of more local distribution will be given in the alphabetical list of honey plants
The four most important honey plants in the United States are sweet clover, alfalfa, white clover, and alsike clover. They furnish not far from 70 per cent, of the surplus honey which enters the wholesale market. The other major honey plants, many of which have a restricted distribution, contribute from one to four per cent. Besides the surplus honey which is sold in the wholesale market, on which the honey-buyer’s estimates are based, there is a large amount of honey produced which never enters this market. As a commercial product, basswood has almost entirely disappeared, but the reports of many beekeepers show that this honey is still obtained, but usually mixed with clover. The major honey plants are comparatively few in number. Among trees are orange, tulip tree, the tupelos, sourwood, black locust, mesquite, sumac, and catsclaw; among shrubs, the mountain sages, raspberry, and gallberry; and among herbaceous plants, in addition to those named above, cotton, buckwheat, goldenrod, aster, Spanish needles, and heartsease.
According to E. R. Root, from 80 to 90 per cent, of the nectar available in the honey plants in the eastern half of this country is lost from want of bees to gather it; while in the western half as much as 70 per cent, is gathered from irrigated alfalfa and sweet clover. In Iowa alone the annual product of 10,000,000 pounds, it has been estimated, could be increased to 60,000,000 pounds. A large part of the nectar of tulip tree and other early-blooming plants is lost because the colonies of honeybees, at the beginning of the season, are not strong enough to store all of it. Many orchards of fruit trees and plantations of berry bushes are imperfectly pollinated, because there are not bees enough in the vicinity to make use of the floral food.
Moreover, the area of cultivated honey plants which to-day furnish the larger part of the commercial surplus is steadily increasing. Fruit trees, as the apple, pear, orange, and many small fruits; buckwheat, cotton, and a vast acreage of plants cultivated for fodder, as alfalfa, sweet clover, alsike clover, and crimson clover, are yearly becoming of greater value. The possibilities of this artificial pasturage are only partially recognized. Sweet clover alone will soon add many million pounds to the present output. It is rapidly spreading over North and South Dakota, Nebraska, and in the Rocky Mountain districts, providing new bee territory which for many years will not be overstocked with bees. In 1923 the Kansas State Board of Agriculture reported 48,891 acres grown in 92 counties in Kansas.
Honeys vary greatly in color, density, flavor, and in the length of time they