Finally after months of waiting and preparing and painting and assembling, the bees have a new, permanent (hopefully) home. Here are a few pictures of the process...
About a week ago we sprayed grass killer in this area where we planned to put the bees. This morning, Greg mowed the area with a brush cutter to get it as flat as possible. We then laid out this landscape fabric and dumped cypress mulch on top of it. This will keep the grass from growing up around the hives, and eliminate the need for running the weed-eater near them, which the bees hate. I also lopped off any branches that were hanging over the hive area. I don't need them falling on the hives and knocking them over. This area is toward the back of the property, near the pond, and up high and facing south.
Next, we set up a platform out of cinder blocks and pressure treated eight foot 2 x 6 boards I picked up a few days ago at Menard's. Once the platform was reasonably level, we set up the hives on top of the boards, leaving enough room to walk behind them or put hay bales back there as a wind screen in the winter.
Here's what the whole thing looks like finished. Now all I have to do is transfer the bees from their travel boxes to their new homes.