Is Cedar or Pine Right for Your Next Hive?
Posted on May 18, 2018.
Because painting cedar isn’t necessary as it is with pine, you can get up and running quicker with a cedar box. Typically, pine is painted to protect it from weather conditions, but a cedar box is durable enough that it will not deteriorate as quickly in the elements. We recommend treating your cedar hive with a natural, plant-based oil, such as tung. Make sure you give your treated hive time to dry and air out.
Cedar is also lighter than pine. This weight difference isn’t large, but when you’re dealing with lots of boxes, any weight reduction is welcome. Our cedar hives are eight frames as well, which cuts down on the weight considerably.
Cedar is traditionally more expensive than pine. However, most beekeepers will see this up-front cost fade due to the durability and longevity of cedar over the years
Beekeepers have been building boxes out of pine since the first Langstroth hives, and the bees don’t complain.
One benefit of pine is that it is more affordable than cedar, and more readily available.
Depending on the size of your box and the thickness of the wood, the weight can be about the same, but generally, pine is a little heavier than cedar.
If you elect to go with a pine box, most beekeepers will put a coat of a primer and a coat of exterior latex paint to protect the wood. This takes time to apply and time to dry before you place your bees inside. Also, the cost of the primer and paint add to the initial cost, although this is minor if you’re planning on painting a lot of hives