Winter 2020 Class Descriptions below. 
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Download PDF of Winter Classes 2020

Gift Certificates are available for Winter classes


"A Gift of Honeybees is a Gift of Life"

We can mail you a beautiful, personalized gift certificate to give to someone.
We ask an additional $8 to cover the printing, postage and handling,
or I can email a digital one at no extra cost.


Winter Weekend Workshops 2020

New Paltz, Hudson Valley

January 18 & 19, January 25 & 26 or February 22 & 23

The Commons - Brooklyn
February 8 & 9

Download PDF of flyer
This two-day class will introduce students to Natural/Organic Beekeeping with a Biodynamic influence.  

You will come away with the knowledge, as well as the inspiration to nurture your honeybees and respect these hardworking, gentle creatures who live in complex and beautiful communities.  We encourage beginners to take both days to obtain a broad understanding of the responsibilities and challenges entailed in this undertaking, so you can be knowledgable, loving and confidant beekeepers.  These classes can be taken on one weekend, or divided into Saturday one weekend and Sunday another weekend. 

Intro to Organic Beekeeping  (Saturday 10am - 6pm)
Learn about the requirements and responsibilities for organic beekeeping. Understand the community of a hive, the tools involved, elements of site selection, where you can obtain honeybees and equipment, and an understanding of a naturalist approach to their needs. This class introduces students to a nurturing way of beekeeping, and a philosophy of respect and love for these amazing creatures.  There is a hands-on demonstration of assembling a wooden hive, and extensive class handouts.

Understanding and Caring For Your Bees  (Sunday 10am - 6pm)
Topics will include: hive congruency and design to benefit the colony (including Top Bar Hives); Honeybee health and disease management the natural way; seasonal concerns and methods to keep your bees strong.

The two-day class fee is $200 per person.  Individual days are $110 per person.

We encourage everyone to attend the entire two-day class, even if you are already a beekeeper.  If coming to a New Paltz class you can choose to emmerse yourself in the weekend, or break it up into Saturday one weekend and Sunday another weekend.

We can help you obtain bees and we suggest you wait until after the class to purchase your equipment so you have a better understanding of your choices.



Seasonal Class Offerings

HoneybeeLives main classes are the two-day winter weekend workshops
that take place in Brooklyn and New Paltz (in the Hudson Valley).
We do offer a variety of classes throughout the year, supporting beekeepers with knowledge helpful for each season,
as well as informational classes for the general public and kids. You can download a list of our seasonal classes below.
Download Seasonal Classes PDF

Thank you for your interest in HoneybeeLives.

Chris Harp and Grai Rice


 Drumming a Swarm in the Apiary

How to Inspect, and Maintain, a Healthy Hive

Learn how to interact with your hive and understand what you are looking at. It is important to recognize healthy brood patterns, as well as signs of problems. Gain a sense of the rhythms of the hive, watching and preparing for swarm season, and a general overview of hives during the main nectar flow. We will also touch on monitoring for diseases and pests, and discuss various mite treatments and timing. Chris Harp will guide you through the inspection process so you can gain confidence working with hives.  (Spring Class)

Maintaining a Healthy Hive: Fall / Winter Prep

The end of summer is a critical time to tend our hives.  It is important that our colonies are strong, as we head towards colder months.  The earlier we address weaknesses the better we can help the bees rally for the winter. Learn how to clean up hives, and look for problems that might weaken your bees.  

Learn about the life in the hive during this transitional time.  Understand what you are looking at, and how to judge the strength of a hive.  Prepare for fall and winter, to best nurture the bees and boost their immune systems.  Let us help you think thru your autumn tasks of fortifying your hives, and answer your questions.  
We also cover tightening and winterizing hives.

Varroa mite season is in full swing, just when the winter brood is being reared, so vigilance is important.  It may be necessary to treat your hives for these parasites.  Understand the options available for dealing with these pests in non-toxic ways, and if “treating” is necessary, so a hive doesn’t completely crash, learn about treating hives with organic-based acids.  (Late Summer Class)


Intro Lecture on Honeybees and Organic Beekeeping

In June and August

Learn about the lives of Honeybees. Hear about the current plight of Honeybee colonies, and understand the intrinsic value of nurturing these amazing creatures. For the general public, gardeners, and wanna-beekeepers.   Includes a visit into a working hive to experience the honeybee community, and a honey tasting.