A new approach this year includes homemade Haskap ice cream, a sea of sunflowers and a fresh online presence
The owners of Honeyberry Farm Market in Heffley Lake, B.C. are preparing for a season unlike any they’ve experienced.
Mary Marchuk and her husband Glenn Johnson have been avid gardeners for years, and this spring they’re reaping what they’ve sowed and sharing it with the community.
Marchuk and her husband are shifting their focus to become a family-friendly destination. Honeyberry Farm Market won’t only boast fresh fruit, produce, eggs and flowers, but also home-made ice cream.
You might recognize the couple from the Sun Peaks Farmers’ Market, where their produce boxes became a hit.
“We started off doing five of these produce boxes a week… it just exploded,” Marchuk said. “It went up to 35 boxes a week with a waiting list of 35 to 40 people on the list. We couldn’t keep up to the demand, because that’s a lot of produce to grow, weekly, and to tell you the truth they weren’t making us any money.”
Marchuk credited the success of the boxes to the quality of the produce and the complementary bouquet of her home-grown flowers. Although the produce boxes weren’t very profitable for the couple, Marchuk said they continued for three years because they loved gardening and connecting with their customers.
Although Sun Peaks residents can’t benefit from the produce boxes this year, the farm will continue to sell their produce and offer unique new experiences for visitors.
“We’re going to be putting our Haskap berries into the ice cream and our raspberries into the ice cream,” Marchuk said. “We want to make this a family destination where people can come and have an ice cream, do some you-pick on the berries. We’re bringing an antique tractor and for the kids to play on we’re going to have three new picnic tables set up.”
Marchuk said she hopes to partner with a local dairy producer to source the cream from, but she said nothing has been set yet. Marchuk said they’ll be scooping cones for kids and adults as well as offering a take-away option.
“We plan on making ice cream and freezing it, so people can buy it by the pint or the quarter,” Marchuk said. “We’ll be making it right in the market stand daily.”
As well as tasty treats, Honeyberry Farm Market is also adding a field to feast your eyes on.
“This year we’re going to be planting thousands of sunflowers,” Marchuk said. “I just want to welcome people to come for photo ops if they want to. It’s going to be beautiful.”
The retired florist said she’s planted sunflowers in the past, but nowhere near as many as will sprout this summer.
Marchuk said they hope to begin welcoming guests around mid-June, although it’s dependent on the weather. Until then, you can get your tastebuds watering by checking out the new Honeyberry Farms website.