Uncle Jim’s “Better for Bees” Sugar Syrup recipe

10 lbs. H2O (about 5 quarts)

10 lbs. CANE sugar

2 Tablespoons Apple Cider vinegar (organic)

½  teaspoon Citric acid  (available in the canning section)

¼  teaspoon Ascorbic acid powder (available at the Co-op)

¼ teaspoon electrolyte mix (available at Tractor Supply)

Essential oils (again at the Co-op):


Lemon Grass

Tea Tree

  • Heat the water to about 100 – 120°F (but no more). This helps the sugar dissolve quicker.  It will completely dissolve in room temp., if you want.  You can warm the H2O in the microwave or heat it on the stove on low as you are mixing.  The heat also helps invert the sugar more.
  • Add the vinegar, citric acid, ascorbic acid and electrolytes before adding the sugar to make sure they dissolve completely.
  • Now add the sugar and stir. Give it about an hour or so, stirring occasionally, at which point it should be dissolved and clear.
  • The essential oils can be added now, about 3 or 4 drops of each, and stir well.


A time saving alternative to step 4 above is to mix up a small batch of 1:1 sugar syrup with a high concentration of essential oils emulsified with Lecithin beforehand and add ½ cup of this to the above after step 3.

2 ½ lbs. H2O (5 cups)

2 ½ lbs. CANE sugar (not organic)

1 teaspoon Apple Cider vinegar

¼ teaspoon Lecithin powder or granules (yet again at the Co-op)

36 drops of each of the above oils

Mix as above.  It worked well for me to dissolve the lecithin in the oils in a small bowl and incorporate this after the sugar is all dissolved.  Keep this concentrate and add whenever you make a batch of sugar syrup.