Shortly after purchasing our property we decided to plant blueberries. After quite a bit of soil renovation and amendments we were able to produce a soil balance that our blueberries do well in. We started with Duke and Bluecrop varieties and they produce very well. We added a second planting two years later with Huron and Nelson varieties. Working with these four varieties we’ll be able to produce fresh blueberries from June through August. Our blueberries will be amongst the sweetest you’ve ever tasted. That’s the feedback we regularly get.
We have four varieties of strawberries in our patch, each in 100 foot rows. We have three June bearing varieties, Honeoye, and one ever-bearing variety, Seascape. Our strawberries are our latest production crop and are reaching full growth very well.
We tend a small apiary on our property. We fell into beekeeping when my father purchased two hives and nucs while still going through therapy to reduce the strength of allergic reactions to bee stings. Yes, being allergic to bees could be hazardous to your health as a beekeeper. So my mother insisted he wait until the full program is completed before tending hives. Well, we’ve been tending them ever since.
Over the years we have had bees come and go. Replaced queens and hives and harvested quite a lot of wonderful honey. We’ll collect swarms when possible. Each season we’ll collect honey and package it directly as raw honey. No processing at all. Simply fresh raw honey directly from our farm.
We grow two varieties of Shiitake mushrooms on maple logs. After inoculating the logs we let them rest on the moist forest floor. Twice a year we will soak the logs and force fruiting of the mushrooms. Most of our shiitake’s we slice and dry for storage, while some do go to friends and family as fresh mushrooms. If you are looking for fresh shiitake’s please let us know and we can custom harvest fresh ones when we force fruit.
We have over 350 taps in our sugar maple trees on the property. Much of which is tapped on our drumlin where we utilize the hill to set up a gravity feed system that drains into a stainless steel tank in our woods. We pump out the tank and add the sap with our other tanks on the property. Our sap it processed to maple syrup at Packard Valley Farm by Tom Packard. We’ve been working with Tom since 2012 and produce about 80-100 gallons of syrup each season, depending on the season’s run of sap. Amazingly in all that time we have not yet had any light amber syrup produced. It takes special seasonality to get the trees to produce such a light sweet syrup. Most of our syrup is either medium or dark amber varieties.