Cistercians as farmers
The land that was given to the monastery by Count Palatine Rudolf I of Tübingen and other benefactors was intended to provide for Bebenhausen and make it self-sufficient. In 1199, the rules of the Cistercian order said: "The monks of our order must live from the work of their hands. To work our holdings, we create farms, which are administered by the lay brothers." Farming, animal husbandry, and wine production were among the direct activities of a monastery. In the process, the monks were supported by lay brothers, referred to as conversi.