This workshop will emphasize approaches to beekeeping that increase the bees’ vitality and ability to withstand environmental pressures of all kinds. Friday afternoon’s introductory talk will situate the organism of the honey bee colony in the context of the earth organism. On Saturday, we’ll cover the yearly rhythms of life in the hive (and how the beekeeper can support them); increasing the apiary naturally with splits and swarms; “alternative” hive designs; dealing with the varroa mite; and the significance of the honey bee’s communication and navigation skills.
Weather permitting, the workshop will visit the Pfeiffer Center’s apiary, where techniques for working with bees will be demonstrated.
Optional beginners’ session: An optional beginners’ session will be offered before the workshop begins on Friday afternoon (cost: $40 in addition to workshop fee). This session will review rhythms of life in the honeybee colony; the Langstroth hive and its alternatives; and the basics of working with bees. Weather permitting, the beginners’ session will include a visit to the Pfeiffer Center’s apiary, where we will open a hive or two.
Megan Durney is Head Gardener and principal beekeeper at the Pfeiffer Center in Chestnut Ridge, NY.
Bill Day first learned beekeeping from Gunther Hauk at the Pfeiffer Center. He keeps bees at Bluefield Farm in Blauvelt, NY.
Kerry Grefig, director of the Visiting Students Program at Hawthorne Valley Farm in Ghent, NY, has been working with honey bees for the past decade. Kerry has a background in small-scale, diversified organic farming and farm-based education. She received her BS in Environmental Studies and her MPS in Agricultural Extension and Education.