Recently, I've read some interesting articles about spraying raw milk, sugar, molasses, and compost teas on pastures and cropland to both help build the microbe levels and increase the Brix readings of the forage being grown.
|Sprayer mounted on my little John Deere tractor|
There is a whole lot of information online about spraying sugars on pastures, gardens, cropland, as an additive to herbicides, etc. The quick summary of what I found is that you can use ordinary white sugar (or brown sugar), corn syrup (Karo syrup, etc.), or molasses (there are more types of molasses than I realized). The typical suggested rate of application ranged from 1-5 lb. of sugar per acre.
If you are interested in treating a smaller area like a garden, one source recommended using 1-3 TB of sugar per gallon of water.
Another source used 1 qt. of corn syrup per acre combined with a herbicide application and 1 gal of corn syrup combined with a liquid Nitrogen application.
Yet another source said to use 1/2 gal of molasses per acre in monthly applications, while someone else suggested 5 lb. of sugar per acre.
At about this point, I began to wonder if any of this sugar hocus-pocus would even work, but I decided to grit my teeth and push on with the experiment. I managed to round up a few bottles of corn syrup, mixed it into about 15 gal. of water and sprayed about 1/2 acre of anthills, which worked out to a little bit over 1 gal. of corn syrup per acre.
Since I was just spraying a sugar solution, I didn't have to worry about any skips, overlaps, spray drift, etc., I just turned on the sprayer and sprayed the heck out of those anthills (a lot less stressful than spraying herbicides).
Seeing those bees going after the sprayer made me wonder if spraying sugar on the pastures or cropland might be more likely to encourage the bees than anything else. Or, if I could encourage the bees to show up more often at my other garden if I sprayed some sugar on it. So many experiments, so little time is the story of my life.
That would be a tough way to be a celebrity, but the older I get, the less options I seem to have to achieve that unachievable goal.