BioFuel Oasis

Classes

URBAN FARMING CLASSES AT BIOFUEL OASIS

BioFuel Oasis is excited to announce its urban farm class series for Winter 2017! We specialize in hands-on, seasonally appropriate classes designed to empower people.

We have a comprehensive Beekeeping Education Program. Click here for a description.

Classes are not held at the BioFuel Oasis. They are held in Oakland/Berkeley backyards or at Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee) in Berkeley

Refund policy

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Short List of Non-Bee Classes – Click on Class for Full Description and to Register!
February 12th – Fast Mead Making
February 26th – Everything You Need to Know About Backyard Chickens
March 5th – Bee Medicine Making with Honey, 
Beeswax, & Propolis
March 5th – Candlemaking with 
Beeswax

Short List of 2017 Beekeeping Classes – Click on Date for Full Description and to Register!
LECTURE CLASSES:
Backyard Beekeeping: Jan. 26th, Feb. 12th, Mar. 12th
Making Splits: The Basics: Jan. 22nd
Swarm Prevention Jan. 29th
Making Splits: The Details: Feb. 12th
Year Round Varroa Mite Mgmt: Feb. 26th
Beekeeping Through the Seasons: Mar. 5th
HANDS-ON CLASSES:
Hive Inspection Classes: Mar. 25th, more to be added in April & May
Honey Harvesting Classes: May and October
Preparing Your Hive for Winter Classes: September
Varroa Mite Classes: March, April, June, August
Splits/Nucs: April and May


FULL DESCRIPTIONS OF ALL CLASSES IN ORDER BY DATE

Making Splits: The Basics
Sunday, January 22nd, 6pm-8pm
Class size: Limited to 12 people
Location: Instructor’s cottage off Piedmont Ave. in Oakland
Cost: $30

Learn how to work with the bees as they expand in the spring and make successful splits. Splitting your hive is the number one thing you can do to reduce the varroa mite population. It also enables you to have 2-3 hives so you have more flexibility in helping out a weak hive.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke. See bio here.

Backyard Beekeeping
Thursday, January 26th, 6-9pm
Location: Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee), Berkeley
Cost: $40

Honeybees are a joy to keep in the backyard simply for their buzzing presence and, on hot days, the smell of honey, wafting through the air within ten feet of the hive. They increase pollination in your yard and therefore increase your yields from fruit trees and vegetables. You may also harvest honey (gallons per year), beeswax, pollen, and propolis from the hive. We’ll cover what you need to know to feel ready to have a Langstroth backyard beehive – how to get bees, what equipment you need, where to put the hive, how to extract honey and upkeep the hive. There will be local honey to try.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke has been keeping bees in her backyard for 13 years, and has developed the beekeeping education program at the Oasis. She is former vice-president of the Alameda Co Beekeeping Association.

Swarm Prevention and Internal Workings of the Hive
Sunday, January 29th, 6pm-8pm
Class size: Limited to 12 people
Location: Instructor’s cottage off Piedmont Ave. in Oakland
Cost: $30

Swarm prevention begins the first week in February and continues throughout the spring. Be prepared! This class will touch upon organizing your hive (e.g. where to move frames so they get the honey capped quickly, so you don’t have a multitude of uncapped honey).
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke. See bio here.

Backyard Beekeeping
Sunday, February 12th, 10am-1pm
Location: Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee), Berkeley
Cost: $40

Honeybees are a joy to keep in the backyard simply for their buzzing presence and, on hot days, the smell of honey, wafting through the air within ten feet of the hive. They increase pollination in your yard and therefore increase your yields from fruit trees and vegetables. You may also harvest honey (gallons per year), beeswax, pollen, and propolis from the hive. We’ll cover what you need to know to feel ready to have a Langstroth backyard beehive – how to get bees, what equipment you need, where to put the hive, how to extract honey and upkeep the hive. There will be local honey to try.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke has been keeping bees in her backyard for 13 years, and has developed the beekeeping education program at the Oasis. She is former vice-president of the Alameda Co Beekeeping Association.

Fast Mead Making
Sunday, February 12th, 2-5pm
Location: Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee), Berkeley
Cost: $40 class only:

Optional: $40 class plus $30 materials fee (covering honey, airlock, 1-gallon glass carboy) to take fermenting mead home = $70 total – This $70 option is FULL!While traditional meads take a year (or more) to age and be drinkable, there is rising interest in making meads that are reliably drinkable within a few months and that will be our focus. Lower alcohol meads are drinkable in a couple of weeks. These meads allow you to experiment without having to wait. Jim will guide you through a participatory demonstration of mead-making. You will learn about what equipment you need, how to prepare must (unfermented mead), what flavors work well together, fermentation, sanitation, and bottling. There will be a tasting of some of Jim’s meads along the way.
Instructor: Jim Veitch is a Berkeley beekeeper who has been making fast mead for the last 2 years and experimenting with different delicious recipes, including ginger, galangal, dry wine mead, and more.

Making Splits: The Details plus a Little Queen Rearing
Sunday, Feb. 12th, 6pm-8pm
Class size: Limited to 12 people
Location: Instructor’s cottage off Piedmont Ave. in Oakland
Cost: $30

This class will go into more details of making splits and nucs, including specific splits that work well, what can go wrong and how to fix it, and which months/timing works best. We will go into detail on a specific split that reduces varroa mites on both sides of the split. We will also talk about simple ways to make queens.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke. See bio here.

img_0997Everything You Need to Know About Backyard Chickens
Sunday, February 26th, 1-4pm
Location: Backyard with Chickens in Alameda
Cost: $40

From setting up a brooder for baby chicks to the essentials of water, feed, and coop requirements for a thriving backyard flock, this class will prepare you for what you need to know! Having chickens is very rewarding, but it can feel daunting to get started. We will go over many topics for setting up and keeping your chickens happy and healthy including: planning your coop, protecting against predators, winter time care, best breeds, nutrition, and optimum egg production.
Instructor: Jacquelyn Frost has been raising and training animals of all shapes and sizes for over 20 years, with chickens being her latest adventure. She has been known to direct unsuspecting conversation partners into talking about backyard chicken keeping.

Year Round Varroa Mite Management aka How to Have Your Hive Survive the Winter
Sunday, Feb. 26th, 6pm-8pm
Class size: Limited to 12 people
Location: Instructor’s cottage off Piedmont Ave. in Oakland
Cost: $30

Varroa mites and the viruses they transmit are a major threat to bees. Learn what to do each season to keep mite levels low and your bees thriving.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke. See bio here.

Bee Medicine Making with Honey, 
Beeswax, & Propolis
Sunday, March 5th, 10am-1pm
Location: Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee), Berkeley
Cost: $40 plus $15 materials fee

From honey to propolis, everything the bees make has healing qualities. In this class, you’ll learn how to make bee medicine: an herbal honey, a salve with beeswax, and a propolis tincture. We will learn about the medicinal properties of different bee creations and common herbs, make an herbal oil together, and combine bee products with common medicinal herbs you can grow in your garden like rose petals, rose hips, lavender, and calendula. Everyone goes home with a salve and herbal honey!

Instructor: Jonah Aline Daniel is a Clinical Herbalist, Bodyworker, Beekeeper, Candlemaker, and Organizer currently based in North Sonoma County. They have been studying herbs and making candles since 2008 and are the founder of Narrow Bridge Candles and Plants as Allies.

Candlemaking with 
Beeswax
Sunday, March 5th, 2-5pm
Location: Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee), Berkeley
Cost: $40 plus $15 materials fee

Learn the art of candlemaking and take away the tools and knowledge to do it at home! The smell of Beeswax alone is supportive to the immune system, and burning Beeswax candles produces negative ions that clean our air of odors, pollens, smoke, viruses, mold, dust mites, dust and other allergens. With Beeswax from a local beekeeper, we will learn how to make both dipped and container candles. Students will take home candles they made in class plus tealight molds and wicks to make more on their own.
Instructor: Jonah Aline Daniel is a Clinical Herbalist, Bodyworker, Beekeeper, Candlemaker, and Organizer currently based in North Sonoma County. They have been studying herbs and making candles since 2008 and are the founder of Narrow Bridge Candles and Plants as Allies.

Beekeeping Through the Seasons
Sunday, March 5th, 6pm-8pm
Class size: Limited to 12 people
Location: Instructor’s cottage off Piedmont Ave. in Oakland
Cost: $30

The bees activities (what they do and don’t do) are connected deeply to what is going on in their environment. Each season the bees work with a different set of circumstances: outside temperature, amount of daylight hours, forage/food available, pest load, and more. This lecture class will focus on what the bees are doing each season in response to those circumstances, and also cover how the beekeeper can work with the bees to maximize bee health and success. The bees apparently divide the year up into five seasons, not four, like humans.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke. See bio here.

Backyard Beekeeping
Sunday, March 12th, 10am-1pm
Location: Sticky Art Lab, 1682 University Ave (at McGee), Berkeley
Cost: $40

Honeybees are a joy to keep in the backyard simply for their buzzing presence and, on hot days, the smell of honey, wafting through the air within ten feet of the hive. They increase pollination in your yard and therefore increase your yields from fruit trees and vegetables. You may also harvest honey (gallons per year), beeswax, pollen, and propolis from the hive. We’ll cover what you need to know to feel ready to have a Langstroth backyard beehive – how to get bees, what equipment you need, where to put the hive, how to extract honey and upkeep the hive. There will be local honey to try.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke has been keeping bees in her backyard for 13 years, and has developed the beekeeping education program at the Oasis. She is former vice-president of the Alameda Co Beekeeping Association.

Hands-On Hive Inspection Class
Saturday, March 12th, Noon-2:30pm
Location: Backyard hive in Berkeley or Oakland
Cost: $35

Learn how simple it is to do a thorough hive inspection! Whether you’ve never gone down into your brood boxes before or are a new beekeeper this year, this is a great class to learn what everything looks like in your hive and how to use all the tools properly to least upset the bees (read: not get stung). We will go into a hive and show what everything looks like: eggs, larvae, capped worker/drone brood, capped honey, and pollen. You’ll learn how to assess if your hive is the right size for the amount of bees and if you have a fertile, laying queen. This is a great second class to take (after Backyard Beekeeping) to get real experience with the bees present.
Instructor: Jennifer Radtke. See bio here.

How to Build a Simple Composting Toilet in Your Garden
Postponed till spring 2017, Date to be Announced.
Location: Backyard in Berkeley
Cost: $50

In this class you will learn how to build a simple, rustic, outdoor composting toilet out of a 5 gallon bucket and old fence boards. The appeal of these toilets is that they take no water, are outdoors (no stinky bathrooms or lines to use the ONE bathroom most of us have…) and of course, the amazing byproduct of compost. These toilets require dumping the 5 gallon bucket of deposits into a large compost bin made of fence boards and welded wire mesh. Sequoiah has been using composting toilets for the last 7 years and is very excited to share this information with others. You will get to see her complete system. Her carpentry skills are basic so this is NOT going to be about fine carpentry, but about practicality and ecology.
Instructor: Sequoiah Wachenheim started tending vegetables in the Bay Area at age 6 and hasn’t stopped yet! She has been sole proprietor of Earthly Arts, a consulting landscape design business for the last 16 years, and is extremely passionate about growing her own food.

How to Enroll
Please click the “Pay Now” button below the class description to reserve your spot in the class via credit card or debit card. (You don’t need a PayPal account – just click “Continue” next to where it says “Don’t have a PayPal account?”)

You can also sign up by calling BioFuel Oasis (510.665.5509) or coming in during business hours.

Our classes often fill up 1-2 weeks before class date, we strongly recommend you sign up early!

Work-Trade

We have low-income and work-trade spots available. Please inquire if you would like to apply for one.

Class Refund Policy

Cancellations must be made seven days in advance in order to receive a full refund. Refunds are not given for classes canceled less than seven days ahead; however, you can always send a friend in your place.