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  • 9200 Fair Oaks Blvd, Fair Oaks, CA 95628
  • 916.963.4000

Beekeeping

Rudolf Steiner College

Beekeeping has been a long tradition at Rudolf Steiner College. Beneficial insects, including pollinators such as bees, are essential to maintaining a sustainable agricultural system. The Raphael Garden boasts several hives that help to ensure the vitality of our biodynamic gardens and our local vegetation.

Biodynamic beekeeping is different from other beekeeping or bee-stewarding methods in that it aims to minimize environmental stress factors while allowing bees to develop in accordance with their true nature.

Some of the methods that enable this:

  • Natural combs are used, rather than foundation.
  • Swarming is recognized as the natural form of colony reproduction.
  • Clipping of queen’s wings is prohibited.
  • Regular and systematic queen replacement is prohibited.
  • Pollen substitutes are prohibited.
  • Beehives must be made of all natural materials, such as wood, straw, or clay.
  • Artificial insemination is not used. Instead queens are allowed to fly free to mate.
  • Grafting of larvae to produce queens is prohibited.
  • No pesticides or antibiotics are allowed, although the use of natural organic acids such as formic and oxalic acid may be used for mite control.
  • Honey may be transported in containers made of artificial materials but must be decanted into containers of glass or metal for retail sale.

For more on biodynamic beekeeping, read "Smitten with Bees," an article from the Sacramento News & Review featuring Keith Gelber, RSC's resident bee steward, follow the Frey Vineyard Bee Blog at www.freywine.com/bee-blog.html, or attend a beekeeping or one of our other biodynamic workshops

Other Resources