Apiary and Beekeeping
For more information, contact:
Special Projects Coordinator
Ph: 724-776-4806 x 1517
Beekeeping at The Apiary
Cranberry Highlands’ Community Apiary is designed to be a community resource for education about pollination and beekeeping. A part of the golf course’s Audubon Sanctuary certification program, the pollinator garden provides a bee-friendly habitat adjacent to the municipal golf course for honey beehive placement and instruction. Honey bees are essential to our global ecosystem as they work hard to pollinate farm crops and other plants that bring us a third of the foods we eat. The Community Apiary is a joint project of Cranberry Township – which owns the facility – together with Cranberry Highlands, the Cranberry Township Community Chest, and Burgh Bees.
We aim to spread pollinator awareness and educate all our members so that they are successful and safe in their beekeeping. To help achieve this the following conditions are required:
- All interested beekeepers must attend an orientation and safety training meeting.
- Beekeepers must participate in at least one introductory course to beekeeping.
- Beekeepers must agree to and sign a Lease and Bylaws Agreement form. Opens a New Window.
- Beekeepers and guests must sign a Waiver of Liability and Assumptions Risk Form.
When designing the landscape, our focus was to provide resources for pollinators of all kinds. The lack of flowers on the golf course forces pollinators to branch out to other locations to secure alternative nectar sources. To keep them closer to home, we supplied them with a diverse range of flowering species that would bloom throughout the summer months. It is key to always have blooming species to avoid a nectar shortage known as “nectar dearth.” In Pennsylvania, nectar dearth usually occurs between July and August.
To encourage bird and pollinating species to inhabit our sanctuary, we plan to introduce mason beehives, bat boxes, hummingbird feeders, bird boxes, butterfly boxes and honey beehives. By introducing an array of plant species and wildlife nesting sites, we hope that we can use this site as an educational tool to discuss the interactive complexity of Mother Nature.
Safety was our main priority when we were establishing the apiary boundaries. We selected the backside of hole #12 because it is secluded from the rest of the course. Tucked into the woodline behind the irrigation pond, the location offers a buffered area to keep honey bees away from golfers. Shown in the diagram below, there are two non-electric “Safety Gate” entrances, as well as a peach-colored electrified fence border. The electrified fence is crucial to our apiary to guard it from any unwanted pests. Rest assured, the fence will be off during the daylight and on during the night hours. Appropriate signage has been incorporated into the design to ensure that visitors are aware of both the electric fen