About the Online Class:
The live Gold Star Weekend Intensive is two very full days, jam-packed with the information you need to be ready to keep your own bees in top bar hives. It is appropriate for both novice beekeepers AND those with some beekeeping experience. This online class provides all the information of the weekend intensive in a format that fits your schedule and availability.
What we cover:
- How We Got Here From There - A history of the beekeeping methods and agricultural practices that have brought us to the methods in use today. What effect are these things having on honeybees? What is causing CCD, and what can you do to help?
- Inside the Hive - What are the bees doing in there? How can we support their natural processes and systems, managing the hive responsibly, but interfering as little as possible?
- When to Do What & Why - Starting a new hive, performing hive inspections, comb handling, honey harvesting, wax rendering, mite monitoring, splitting your hive, winterizing. This section includes hands-on work with Gold Star equipment.
- Terrible Things That Can Happen to Your Wonderful Bees - Forewarned is forearmed! Learn how to keep your bees healthy, and how to recognize and resolve problems in the hive.
About your instructor:
Christy Hemenway, Owner/Author/Teacher/Speaker
Searching for the answer to the question "Just what did bees do before beekeepers?" Christy Hemenway launched her own investigation into what was really behind the growing problems with honeybees.
She soon came to the conclusion that "less is more" and that the closer to their natural systems the bees were able to be, the better. That inspired her to found Gold Star Honeybees - to advance a low-tech, natural beekeeping system known as the top bar hive.
After giving a talk called "How & Why to Keep Bees in Top Bar Hives" at the Mother Earth News Fair in Puyallup, Washington in 2013, Christy was approached by New Society Publishers about writing a book on the subject of top bar beekeeping, and The Thinking Beekeeper - A Guide to Natural Beekeeping in Top Bar Hives was on its way.
The Thinking Beekeeper was followed in 2016 by its sequel Advanced Top Bar Beekeeping - Next Steps for the Thinking Beekeeper, which picks up where the Thinking Beekeeper left off - at the beginning of the hive's second year.
This informative series discusses the benefits of natural beekeeping in top bar hives, and outlines both the "how-to" and the "why-to" of this simple and bee-friendly method of keeping bees.
Christy has given many talks (including a TED talk in 2011) and has led many a lively discussion about top bar hives and it all melts down (if you will pardon the pun) to this:
Because the most important feature of a top bar hive will always be that inside that easy to manage hive, the bees make their own natural beeswax honeycombs - without the use of foundation.