As far as non-timber forest products go, things have been pretty quiet up here on South Hill over the past few months, but never fear syrup, honey, and mushroom-lovers of the world; South Hill Forest Products has awoken from our annual hibernation! We are already taking on the year with a brand new batch of excited and dedicated Ithaca College students who have been busy as bees over the past week. In just seven days we have gotten the mushroom room up and running, Pink and Pohu Oyster mushroom spawn ordered, syrup-season preparations underway, and a batch of hickory syrup ready to go through a taste test.
This season is sure to be a special one (not that every single season with us isn’t). We have a new logo, some potential new products such as hickory syrup, and plans to expand upon some past experimental products such as our beeswax soap. Perhaps the most exciting news for this season, however, is the development in our maple sugaring operation. Chris Sinton, a professor in the Environmental Studies and Sciences department here at Ithaca College received a grant to research fuel efficiency for various small-scale maple syrup boiling methods. This year we will be using a brand new evaporator alongside our two boiling pans to begin testing the efficiency of the various methods.
Stay tuned; our mushrooms are just around the corner!
With love and appreciation,
Your new (and very excited) South Hill Forest Products team