Introductory course to Sustainable Beekeeping

Welcome to the Southern Appalachian School of Apiculture!


Would you like to learn small-scale sustainable beekeeping? Perhaps you have always been curious about the inner working of a beehive or maybe you’re concerned with the decline in the honey bee population and want to contribute.

There are many people that want to have bees, harvest honey or pollinate their garden. Most of those people however, never take action. But congratulations because you’re taking action right now!

Whatever the reason is for your special interest in managing honey bee hives…I want to welcome you and say THANK YOU! We need more beekeepers like you who have an interest in sustainable beekeeping practices. Why?

…because beekeeping isn’t easy! There’s a HUGE learning curve involved, taking years to accomplish. With today’s hive pests & disease, beekeeping isn’t what it used to be. I had the advantage of apprenticing under an excellent beekeeper.

Now you can too! Don’t take years to learn from your own mistakes…when you can learn from my 18+ years of experience.

  • I’ve learned to prevent pests & disease BEFORE they take over
  • I’ve learned how to split my own hives and have NEVER once bought package bees
  • I know how to keep hives alive even in high spray zones
  • I have created a minimal-disturbance method of beekeeping for better results and healthier bees
  • I’ve also experienced loss…and I know how it feels when all of my hard work and effort seems to have washed away
  • I also know the joy of success from tons of trial & error
  • My sustainable beekeeping methods have resulted in higher colony populations and larger harvests!

Learn more about my teaching style here…

Who is this course for?

Do you know what to look for during a hive inspection?

  • Those who have zero experience with honey bees
  • Anyone with novice or even experienced levels of knowledge
  • Anyone who already has bees and wants to see major improvements in their hives and personal skills
  • Anyone with bees who struggle with winter losses
  • Anyone tired of spending money on package bees
  • Everyone who wants to learn beekeeping better, faster, right now!

This course teaches all of the above and more using The 7 Methods of Minimal Disturbance that have been time-tested and mother approved…oh wait, that’s cereal. But just so you know, my mother does approve.

As we discuss the care and management of the honey bee colony rather than purely beekeeping techniques, the information can be utilized for any hive type in any situation, anywhere in the world.

If you’re like most people interested in beekeeping then you’ve read plenty of material but now you feel…you know, it’s time for something more. It’s time to open a hive and get your hands sticky!

Topics included but are not limited to:

  1. How the colony works
  2. Different styles of beehives
  3. Overview of Sustainable management methods
  4. Swarming and potentially how to catch and/or trap them
  5. Equipment needed to get started
  6. Discussion of costs
  7. Harvesting honey and beeswax sustainably
  8. Basic plant knowledge

There will also be time for discussion and questions in order to give you the most out of this course. The key focus will be how to maintain honey bee hives in such a way as to help our ecology and benefit all of our pollinators.

There will be refreshments available as well as information handouts to take home with you.

*Please Note: For legal reasons and the stinging nature of honey bees, a waiver must be signed in order to participate in this and any other course offered. The waiver form & registration form can be downloaded here.

*Complete each form and email to: jonathanhargus@thebeekeepingmentorgmentor.com

*Cost: the cost is $40 per person OR $75 for a couple (note that through Paypal, you will need to pay full price for 2 people and $5 will be returned to you during the course). Classes will be run from 2:30-4:30pm (2 full hours) on the available calendar dates below. Each class hosts a maximum of 6 students only! Each class hosts a maximum of 6 students only! Payments can be made at any time to book your preferred date. Courses that are marked full have already been paid in full and reached the maximum 6-student limit.

Introductory Beekeeping Course

Join me in my home apiary for an in-depth, hands-on course in the Best of the Basics!

$40.00

*Gear & Equipment: Protective veils with lightweight vests will be provided. Feel free to bring your own protective clothing. Long sleeves and gloves are recommended but not required. Please do not wear any colognes, perfumes or strong deodorants that day (don’t worry, we won’t judge).

*Classes will be held either on a Saturday or Sunday. See available dates below!!

*Important information before you come…MUST READ HERE.

2020 Calendar dates for the Introductory course to Sustainable Beekeeping:

  • 23rd February- (past)
  • 29th February- (past)
  • 28th March- (full)
  • 11th April
  • 25th April
  • 9th May
  • 27th June
  • 25th July
  • 22nd August
  • 19th September
  • 18th October

Looking for some one-on-one?

Click below to find out more about my personal mentor-ship program. That’s right! I come to your apiary with the specified limits and guide you through WHATEVER bee stuff you need help with…



Email me from my Contact Page for more details and/or to book a class!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.