Category Archives: Things to do in October

Sloe Wine Recipe

Sloes are good this year – just managed to pick 9lbs in less than half an hour.

Here’s a recipe for sloe wine with honey:


  • 3lb sloes;
  • 3.5lb honey;
  • 1 gallon of water;
  • red wine yeast;
  • yeast nutrient.


  • Pick through the sloes and remove stalks, leaves etc;
  • Wash the fruit;
  • Boil the water;
  • Pour boiling water on the fruit then mash with stainless steel masher;
  • Cover and leave for 5 days stirring daily;
  • Strain off the fruit and pour the liquor over the honey, stir till dissolved;
  • Add the yeast and nutrient;
  • Cover again and leave for a week while ferment dies down a bit;
  • Pour into demijohn, fit airlock and leave till ferment is finished;
  • Siphon off the lees and leave for a year;
  • Pour it down the lavatory.

Update 30.1.14 – this wine is now fermented out, it is crystal clear rich crimson in colour and very drinkable – if a little sweet.

Copyright ©, 2014. All Rights Reserved.

Things to do in October

October is the last month for the beekeeper to ready his or her bees for the winter. The ivy will be coming to an end soon and the bees need to have enough stores on board to carry them through the winter. As the temperatures begin to fall, they spend more of their time clustered and feeding syrup is no longer an option.  Any hives that are still light could be bolstered with some frames of stores from elsewhere.

A rock on the roof might keep the roof on in a gale but if the stand is toppled the hive will burst asunder and the bees will be exposed to the weather so rope or strap your hives if possible.

They say a mouse has the ability to flatten its head and can pass though any holes bigger than the thickness of a pencil so any entrances thicker than that will need mouseguards. A mouseguard is a strip of metal perforated with bee-sized holes which can be pinned over the entrance to prevent mouse invasions. Mice can destroy a hive of bees in the winter.

Copyright ©, 2014. All Rights Reserved.