Workshops & Events

Begin a Vegetable Garden

With Mac Mead
Saturday, April 14, 9:00am-5:00pm

This workshop is for anyone who wants to start a vegetable garden, incorporating basic skills for new gardeners. Topics covered will include: planning the garden (what goes where and when), preparing the soil, fencing the garden, planting and raising seedlings, companion planting, making and using compost, and weeding and mulching. Participants will walk away with the information and hands-on experience they need to get started this spring in their own garden.

The general context will be that of organic and biodynamic gardening, although details about specific biodynamic practices will not be included. The workshop is highly recommended for those without previous gardening experience who are interested in attending the Pfeiffer Center's One-Year Part-Time Training in Biodynamics.

Mac Mead has farmed and gardened biodynamically for nearly forty years. As a co-worker at the Fellowship Community from 1975 until 2005, Mac learned biodynamic methods directly from former co-workers of Ehrenfried Pfeiffer. Mac was the resident farmer at the Fellowship Community’s Duryea Farm from 1997 until 2005, and has been Program Director of the Pfeiffer Center since 2007.

Click here to register.

Conscious Beekeeping:
Special Session for Beginners

With Bill Day
Friday, April 27, 2:00-5:30pm

This half-day orientation for beginning beekeepers will cover: Basic biology of the honeybee colony; rhythms of the year and the beekeeper’s role in the life of the hive; a comparison of Langstroth, top bar and Warré hives; siting your hives; and the basics of working with bees.

Weather permitting, we will visit the Pfeiffer Center’s apiary, where we'll open a hive and illuminate topics discussed in the classroom.

Beginning beekeepers who plan to attend the Conscious Beekeeping workshop on Saturday, April 28 (see below) are strongly encouraged to register for this session.

Bill Day first learned beekeeping from Gunther Hauk as an intern at the Pfeiffer Center in 2001-02. He is the Pfeiffer Center’s beekeeper and beekeeping instructor. He also keeps bees at Bluefield Farm in Blauvelt, NY.

Click here to register.

Conscious Beekeeping:
Practical Organic Approaches for
Healthy Bees and Growing Apiaries

With Bill Day
Saturday, April 28, 9:00am-5:00pm

The growing popularity of small-scale beekeeping is good news for the bees, but it also raises its own set of challenges. Rarely does a small-scale beekeeper encounter Colony Collapse — but every beekeeper must contend with Varroa mites, scant forage, and scarce high-quality package bees and nucs.

What can we do to help our bees thrive and flourish? Starting from an understanding of the honeybee colony as an organism unlike any other found in nature, we will consider:

• Swarming as an expression of the bees’ vitality;
• Healthy rhythms of life in the hive, and how to support them;
• When to intervene and when to let your bees manage on their own;
• Increasing your apiary naturally with splits and swarms while breeding better, locally-adapted queens;
• Alternative hive designs;
• Managing Varroa;
• And more.

Weather permitting, we'll visit the Pfeiffer Center’s apiary, where techniques discussed in the classroom will be demonstrated.

Beginning beekeepers are strongly encouraged to attend the optional Friday afternoon beginners’ session (see listing above).

Bill Day first learned beekeeping from Gunther Hauk as an intern at the Pfeiffer Center in 2001-02. He is the Pfeiffer Center’s beekeeper and beekeeping instructor. He also keeps bees at Bluefield Farm in Blauvelt, NY.

Click here to register.

Pfeiffer Center Plant Sale

Friday, May 18, 9:00am-5:00pm
Saturday, May 19, 9:00am-5:00pm
Sunday, May 20, 9:00am-3:00pm

Don't miss this opportunity to buy beautiful, healthy, biodynamically raised bedding plants for your garden. For eating, you will find all your favorite vegetables and many varieties of tomatoes. For seasoning, we offer a huge variety of annual and perennial herbs: Everything from Anise Hyssop and Basil to Thyme and Summer Savory. And then there are the flowers! Perennials like Echinacea, Rudbeckia, Yarrow, and more, and annuals from Alyssum and Asters to Sunflowers and Zinnias.

Also available will be the Pfeiffer Center's own-made teas and salves, Pfeiffer Center Garden Gold Biodynamic Compost, and more!

Every plant and product sold at our sale is raised and made by Pfeiffer Center staff and interns using biodynamic methods, and all proceeds from the plant sale benefit the programs of the Pfeiffer Center.

Location: In the Pfeiffer Center garden, opposite 285 Hungry Hollow Road, Chestnut Ridge, NY; click here for directions.

The Pfeiffer Center CSA

Starts Monday, June 11

The Pfeiffer Center’s 2018 CSA offers 23 weekly pickups of our own freshly harvested, biodynamically raised vegetables, herbs and flowers from June 11 through November 12. Pickup is conveniently located on the Threefold Educational Center campus from 3:30 to 6:00pm. At our market-style CSA, shareholders pack their own boxes, choosing from a generous selection from the harvest of the day; a gardener is always on hand to assist and answer questions.

Information: Visit this page for complete information and an application form.

Introduction to Biodynamics

with Mac Mead
Coming in Summer 2018

What is biodynamics? There is so much to discover about this modern organic way of agriculture and land care, which works not merely to maintain, but to raise the vitality of the soil and its produce. Biodynamics combines novel techniques of building up healthy soil with a renewed awareness of all the forces at work in the farm organism: among and between the soil, plants, animals, and humans, as well as the cosmos itself. In this introductory workshop, veteran biodynamic farmer and educator Mac Mead will introduce the reasoning behind the methods of biodynamics.

Location: Brooklyn Grange Rooftop Farms, Clinton & Flushing Avenues, Brooklyn, NY 11205.

How Are My Bees?
Understanding and Meeting
Your Bees’ Midsummer Needs

With Bill Day
Saturday, July 28, 9:00am-5:00pm

The height of summer can be a challenging time of year for the bees. Many locales experience a dearth of forage, the varroa mite is flourishing, and many hives are rebuilding after swarming or natural queen succession. Meantime, winter is approaching — faster than you think.

This workshop will focus on midsummer tasks every beekeeper should have in mind to ensure healthy hives and successful overwintering. Topics covered will include: Assessing hive health; when to super, and when to take off boxes; harvesting honey; assessing honey stores, and knowing when and how to feed; monitoring and managing varroa; management options for weak hives; and more. There will be ample time for questions and discussion.

Weather permitting, much of the day will be spent outside in the Pfeiffer Center’s apiary, where techniques discussed in the classroom will be demonstrated.

Bill Day first learned beekeeping from Gunther Hauk as an intern at the Pfeiffer Center in 2001-02. He is the Pfeiffer Center’s beekeeper and beekeeping instructor. He also keeps bees at Bluefield Farm in Blauvelt, NY.

Click here to register.

Farm & Garden Days:
A Hands-On Garden, Farm and Forest Experience

August 13-17 — one week only

Farm and Garden Days is a small (60 participants), specialized, hands-on farm, garden & nature experience for children ages 5-13. Digging potatoes, picking peas, milking cows, visiting horses and honeybees, making pizza in an outdoor clay oven, and more — with plenty of time for swims, exploring nearby woods and streams, art activities, music and games.

Farm and Garden Days is a collaboration between The Nature Place and The Pfeiffer Center. Activities take place in the Pfeiffer Center’s biodynamic gardens and at neighboring Duryea Farm.

When: Monday, August 13 through Friday, August 17, 9:00am-4:00pm. Before- and after-camp care is available. Busing is available from Manhattan.

How much: $925 per week ($1,200 for children coming from New York City; includes bus transportation from Manhattan).

Reserve your child's place in Farm and Garden Days 2017: Click here to enroll online. To learn more about The Nature Place, click here, call 845-356-6477 or, email

One-Year, Part-Time
Practical Training in Biodynamics

Mac Mead, Principal Instructor
With Megan Durney, Bill Day, Jairo Gonzalez,
Jennifer Greene, Craig Holdrege, Steffen Schneider,
Sherry Wildfeuer, and Hugh Williams

Starts Saturday, September 15

In thirteen full-day workshops from September to June, the Pfeiffer Center’s One-Year, Part-Time Practical Training in Biodynamics covers the basic principles and all the timely activities of biodynamic agriculture through the seasons.

Workshop days run from 9:00am to 5:00pm, and feature an engaging mix of classroom talks and field activities. Topics covered include: making and working with the biodynamic preparations • making and working with compost • techniques for soil building • understanding the rhythms of nature and planetary influences on earthly life and growth • best practices in agricultural handwork and pruning • farm animal husbandry • seed saving • biodynamic methods of weed and pest control • the honeybee • and much more.

Information: Visit this page for a complete description of the course and schedule for the year, or apply today!


Prefer to pay by check? Click here to download a printable registration form.

Questions? Directions to the Pfeiffer Center, information about housing, and more can be found at this page.

Need more help? Call the Pfeiffer Center (845-352-5020 x120) M-F, 8:30am-4:30pm, or email us at

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