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Bees at Rock Creek

bees in the gardenThe Rock Creek Campus is dedicated to promoting pollinator health and has established an on-campus apiary serving as an educational tool for campus programs and to promote education and research about bees and their habitats and threats to pollinator persistence. PCC is also certified as an affiliate of the Bee Campus USA program. Read PCC’s Bee Campus USA annual 2017 report, 2018 report,  2019 report, and 2020 report.

Take a class in Backyard Beekeeping!

Students in beekeeper suits pose for group photo behind beehives.

  • Spring Term: CRN 27138
  • Summer Term: CRN 24095

View the schedule »

Due to the campus closure, we are not offering beekeeping classes at this time. We hope to offer beekeeping classes again in the Spring and Summer Terms of 2022! 

Rock Creek Campus Apiary

Rock Creek Campus ApiaryIn an effort to increase the bee population on Rock Creek Campus, the Sustainability office established the first hive in our apiary in April 2014.  This Langstroth-style hive and its bee colony sparked much campus interest and led to subsequent apiary expansion.  The next two hives, Warre and Top Bar styles, are viewing hives, designed with transparent panels to view the work of the bees without disturbing them.  The apiary has been relocated to an area adjacent to the campus greenhouses and expanded to eight hives, including a Flow Hive which allows honey to be harvested with minimal disruption to the bees.  Plans for the apiary include additional Flow Hives and a bee hotel supporting native bee populations including mason and bumblebees.

Kids in the gardenBee hivesImage of bumble beeBee on a flowerFlowers and a bee

Meet the Beekeeper

The Rock Creek campus is home to a Master Beekeeper.  This critical staff member of our Landscape Technology program, oversees the health of the bee colonies, harvests the honey, and provides bee education to our students, stakeholders, and partners. We currently are looking for a replacement beekeeper to continue our bee programming. Stay tuned!

In the meantime, please contact Elaine Cole for more information about the Bees at Rock Creek.

Getting involved

Learning Opportunities

There are many ways for students to get involved and learn more about bees and pollinators. Email Elaine Cole about available opportunities!

Bee Campus USA Committee

You are invited to PCC’s Bee Campus USA Committee, helping to sustain pollinators, food, flowers, and the planet through more conscientious landscape management.

We work together to:

  • Organize events and present hands-on pollinator-themed workshops
  • Present our work at local, state, and national conferences
  • Sponsor service learning projects
  • Support the Washington County Master Gardeners’ Education Garden and its outreach activities
  • Offer pollinator-focused curricula
  • Promote beekeeping on campus
  • Educate the college and the broader community
  • Annually apply for renewal of our certification and report on the previous year

For more information or to join the committee, please contact beecampus@pcc.edu.

Donors: BEE a Bee Supporter!
  1. Participate: We welcome campus volunteers to join in our efforts. Participate in an event during Pollinator Week each June, tend pollinator habitat on campus, and volunteer in the garden.
  2. Educate: Learn more about the plight of bees and other pollinators then share the information with your networks. Anyone can make a difference, in big or small ways, and we need everyone to be aware of the threats to the world’s pollinators. Bees are easy to help. Get started today!
  3. Donate: We need materials, supplies, and bees to grow our apiary.
  • Bee Supplies $20
    Supports our current bee hives.
    Includes pollen patties and sugar for supplemental feedings, feeders, hive tools, smokers, queen excluders, frames, foundation, honey jars, and more.
  • Mason Bee House $35
    Mason Bees, a native bee of our region supports the installation of Mason Bee houses on each campus to attract mason bees.
  • Pollinator Habitat $50
    Help us increase and maintain a healthy pollinator habitat. This provides full-season food sources, pollen, and nectar for our pollinators.
  • Adopt a Bee Colony $170
    Winter is hard on bee colonies, frequently causing significant losses each year. Your support will enable us to replace any we lose and help bolster the strength of our apiary.
  • Adopt a Flow Hive $440
    Our current Flow Hive generates over 3 gallons of honey annually – all harvested without disturbing the bees! Additional Flow Hives allow us to grow our apiary and increase honey production with minimal impact on the hives.

Colony and Hive sponsors will be recognized with signage and apiary visits facilitated by a PCC Beekeeper.

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