If You Cotton to Honey...

Apr 16, 2010

If you cotton to honey, you'll want to head over to Briggs Hall tomorrow (Saturday, April 17) during the 96th annual UC Davis Picnic Day.

You can sample cotton honey, as well as five other flavors, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Extension apiculturist Eric Mussen of the UC Davis Department of Entomology faculty will be offering samples of these honeys: orange blossom, eucalyptus, raspberry, meadowfoam (a vernal-pool flower that is grown commercially in Oregon for oil), starthistle, and cotton.

You'll get six toothpicks, one for each container of honey. You'll taste the exquisite meadowfoam, the exotic raspberry,  and then what some folks say is the "best-of-the-best" honey--starthistle. Bees make this from an invasive, exotic weed that agriculturists hate.  Our tiny winged agricultural workers love it. 

And then you'll taste cotton. Hint: it's a light-colored variety of honey.

If you have a question about honey bees, including colony collapse disorder, ask away.

At Mussen's booth, you can also taste "Honey Lovers," the fruit chews that Gimbal's Fine Candies makes with real honey. Gimbal's, located in San Francisco, is donating 5 percent of the proceeds from the sale of Honey Lovers to UC Davis honey bee research.

These sweet treats at Briggs Hall are free. 

Here's what else the entomologists are planning at Briggs Hall and at the Bohart Museum of Entomology. 

You'll see racing cockroaches, termite trails, Maggot Art, kissing bugs, fleas, ticks, walnut twig beetles and the like, and you can take home some free ladybugs (lady beetles) from the statewide UC Integrated Pest Management Program.  

But it's the honey that makes UC Davis Picnic Day so sweet.

By Kathy Keatley Garvey
Author - Communications specialist

Attached Images:

A YOUNG ITALIAN  honey bee nectaring lavender on the UC Davis campus. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Honey Bee on Lavender

AFTER honey bees nectar flowers, they make honey. This is a close-up shot of honey extraction at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility at UC Davis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Honey Extraction

END PRODUCT: Jars of honey. Visitors to UC Davis Picnic Day at Briggs Hall can sample these flavors, orange blossom, eucalyptus, raspberry, meadowfoam and starthistle,  plus cotton. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

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