We have kept honeybees naturally on a small scale since 2004. We started out with the swarm that “found” my husband Tom and waited all day for him in our cedar tree. When we discovered how much fun they were and how relaxing it was for Tom to work with them, we started adding a few hives every year.
We raise our bees the “old-fashioned” way. We do not treat them with chemicals or antibiotic strips to rid them of pests or disease. We use only organic practices when working with our bees, and the first place you will notice that is in the taste of the amazing raw honey they create.
In return, our honeybees provide us with the most divine of honeys, whose flavors range from summery, silken and simple on the tongue to thickly deep and complex, with early fall clover and maple woods flavoring colored a rich dark gold.
As we have less than 30 hives, we do not offer wholesaling of our honey, and we do not have large quantities available for private sales. Also, we give the majority of our wax back to the bees, so we do not ever have extra wax available.
Our honey is strictly available at the Farmer’s Markets I attend each season, or you can purchase some by calling or texting to make arrangements for pick-up here at the farm. Sometimes I will leave some of my honey on the shelves at Awesome Berries and More just outside of Forest if you want to visit a really fun and funky place and you want to pick up some of our honey while you’re there.
Our honey is gathered only in the late summer and early fall, spun the old-fashioned way and then gently strained but never boiled or pasteurized, and bottled in glass jars to capture the distinctive character and taste that is Six Pines Farm.
How to Care for Your Honey
Honey bought at the grocery store is much different than our raw honey! It is first pasteurized, or boiled at high heat, which destroys the healthy enzymes inside the honey. This keeps it from crystallizing on the store shelf.
Honey is supposed to crystallize. That’s how bees keep honey from going “bad”. Your real raw honey will crystallize after a while, but don’t worry, there’s an easy fix for that.
Simply place your opened jar of honey in a pot with some water. Warm your honey gently, being careful not to boil it. Within 10 or 15 minutes your honey will become beautiful gold liquid again. Placing your jar in a sunny windowsill for the afternoon will do the same thing.
It is not necessary to keep your honey in the fridge. Keep it in a dark place like a cupboard or pantry and it will keep forever.