Tonoloway Farm

Tonoloway Farm New farm in the Appalachian Highlands of Virginia, producing native tree syrups from maple, walnut and hickory. We also grow shiitake and oyster mushrooms in wild forest conditions.

02/26/2020

Sure is hectic hauling sap and boiling syrup, but the view out the office window ain’t too shabby!

02/23/2020

Some syrup makers have a sugar house, some work in a sugar shack, while we have a humble little shed where the magic happens. Video tour of today’s production!

Wooooohoooooo new labels for 2020! First batch is finished and bottled! #forestfood #maplesyrup #appalachia
02/22/2020

Wooooohoooooo new labels for 2020! First batch is finished and bottled! #forestfood #maplesyrup #appalachia

02/19/2020

What are we boiling? It’s hot and sweet and comes from the woods, but it ain’t maple syrup!

02/17/2020

Long steamy evenings in our sugar shack. Starting to get a solid reserve of syrup for the 2020 Highland County Maple Festival!

02/13/2020

Haulin’ maple sap

02/12/2020

Maple sap is flowing like crazy. We’ve gathered more than 1900 gallons of sap so far, with late nights boiling into syrup. The season is here!

Well it might be the smallest maple house in all the Appalachians, but we’re excited for our first boil today in our new...
02/09/2020

Well it might be the smallest maple house in all the Appalachians, but we’re excited for our first boil today in our new sugar shed.

Tonoloway Farm's cover photo
02/08/2020

Tonoloway Farm's cover photo

02/08/2020

From 68 maple taps in 2019 to 628 in 2020... the sugar shed is ready, our lines are up, and were excited for syrup season!

Just a few days before we tap maple trees. Hard to believe all these tanks will soon be full of sap!
01/29/2020

Just a few days before we tap maple trees. Hard to believe all these tanks will soon be full of sap!

Beautiful reflection on the complex, paradoxical history of people, plants & life in the Shenandoah Valley. Thank you Bl...
12/11/2019
Blacks Run Forest Farm

Beautiful reflection on the complex, paradoxical history of people, plants & life in the Shenandoah Valley. Thank you Blacks Run Forest Farm

We feel farming as a work of tender love, and we need to share a story, full of grief and praise, about this place, the Shenandoah Valley.

Our love requires us to tell the truth: this land, beloved by us, is the site of violence through displacement, enslavement, a civil war about the right to expand both, and a capitalist industrial agriculture dependent on fossil fuels and poorly-paid workers. And here we are, working for healing and repair and love. This is an uncomfortable form of respect to offer this place and its history, not easily made peaceful with our colonizing presence. And yet we must talk about affection, about reparation, about gratitude, about remediating the toxins that pollute our souls, society, and soil. Our hope is that we can become like medicinal herbs, native or naturalized, for one another and our homes, for as long as we need to be here. Hopefully, we can all grow a culture where it’s easier to love, be loved, and be free from violence and waste.

This is where we are.

https://www.blacksrunforestfarm.org/rooted

Thank you Staunton Farmers' Market for welcoming us today. What a great vibe! We’re excited to return next season with m...
10/13/2019

Thank you Staunton Farmers' Market for welcoming us today. What a great vibe! We’re excited to return next season with more Highland County maple syrup and other forest foods. #goodsfromthewoods #forestfarming

New bottles, new labels, and the crisp of fall is in the air. We’re excited to make our debut at the Staunton Farmers' M...
10/11/2019

New bottles, new labels, and the crisp of fall is in the air. We’re excited to make our debut at the Staunton Farmers' Market Saturday! If you’re in the area, come visit us to sample our wood-fired maple syrup, as well as hickory syrup made right here on the farm. #goodsfromthewoods

Soil samples headed to the lab for exciting new projects in forest farming. Stay tuned ;-)
06/25/2019

Soil samples headed to the lab for exciting new projects in forest farming. Stay tuned ;-)

Summer's in full swing and we're still enjoying the sweet gifts of late winter. Plenty of maple syrup still available! A...
06/03/2019

Summer's in full swing and we're still enjoying the sweet gifts of late winter. Plenty of maple syrup still available! And Charlottesville peeps, we'll be there Thursday June 6th if you'd like a special delivery. $10 for 8 oz or $13 for 12oz.

Our pastures are green, lambing season is here and these cheeky frolickers are making themselves right at home. Happy sp...
04/18/2019

Our pastures are green, lambing season is here and these cheeky frolickers are making themselves right at home. Happy spring to y’all! #finewool #rambouilletsheep #regenerativeagriculture

04/03/2019

Inoculating oysters, shiitakes and lions mane. They joined their wild relatives in the forest.

03/27/2019

We’ve just completed our first maple syrup season. During the last six weeks, we boiled 1200 gallons of sap over an open fire, yielding just over 14 gallons of sweet treasured syrup. We have limited quantities of this smokey gold for sale. Message us if you’re interested in some of our small batch syrup.

We took a brief hiatus from social media to welcome our daughter. Life on the farm has continued, with her in tow. Excit...
03/18/2019

We took a brief hiatus from social media to welcome our daughter. Life on the farm has continued, with her in tow. Excited to have had a successful first sheep shearing. The sheep did great, and seem to be enjoying this spring weather and young tender grass. 18 fine wool fleeces ready for processing and spinning into yarn. The white one will go into the fine yarns at #cestariyarns and we’ll have the black and light brown for sale this fall. @ Mcdowell, Virginia

As Thanksgiving day approaches, we are grateful for these 21 turkeys who lived to their fullest here on the farm. It’s a...
11/19/2018

As Thanksgiving day approaches, we are grateful for these 21 turkeys who lived to their fullest here on the farm. It’s a bittersweet moment to carry them onward into the arms of our customers. Thank you for supporting regenerative agriculture and our first season farming. A special thanks to @firesidefarm for your incredible coaching! #pastureraised #smallscaleorganicfarming #localfood @ Highland County VA

Making bread stuffing for Thanksgiving? We’ve got a couple bags left of rye and wheat bread stuffing for sale. Respond w...
11/18/2018

Making bread stuffing for Thanksgiving? We’ve got a couple bags left of rye and wheat bread stuffing for sale. Respond with your email or telephone or message us on Facebook if you are interested. They are $10 for a 1.3lb bag.

Laika, our forest manager, working hard to get maple lines up before the first snow #foodforest #maplesyrup
11/15/2018

Laika, our forest manager, working hard to get maple lines up before the first snow #foodforest #maplesyrup

Second week of winter bread subscription. All about the whole grains this week. #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #localb...
11/09/2018

Second week of winter bread subscription. All about the whole grains this week. #naturallyleavened #artisanbread #localbakers

Whole wheat + rye bread stuffing base sealed air tight to hopefully stay nice and dry for Thanksgiving. Testing to see i...
10/28/2018

Whole wheat + rye bread stuffing base sealed air tight to hopefully stay nice and dry for Thanksgiving. Testing to see if this is something people would be interested in for the holidays?!?! #naturallyleavened #wholegrains

Are you interested in freshly baked artisan bread made in Highland County? One week left to sign up for our bread subscr...
10/19/2018

Are you interested in freshly baked artisan bread made in Highland County? One week left to sign up for our bread subscription to receive a fresh loaf each week in November and December. #noneedtodriveoverthemountains

It was a wonderful fall afternoon for the first day of Hands and Harvest festival. Saturday we’ll have more fresh bread,...
10/13/2018

It was a wonderful fall afternoon for the first day of Hands and Harvest festival. Saturday we’ll have more fresh bread, maple granola, Thanksgiving turkeys, and tomatoes & peppers from the garden. Hope to see y’all there!

10/05/2018

Ever wonder what a giddy turkey sounds like? These gobblers celebrate each time we move them into a fresh paddock. #happyturkeys #pastureraised #dontmentionthanksgiving

We'll have this raisin-walnut loaf at the Hands & Harvest Festival October 12th-13th in Monterey. Soooo tasty for breakf...
09/25/2018

We'll have this raisin-walnut loaf at the Hands & Harvest Festival October 12th-13th in Monterey. Soooo tasty for breakfast (or the mid-day energizer we just devoured...) #naturalbread #speltflour #yum

We’ll have this raisin-walnut loaf at the Hands & Harvest Festival October 12th-13th in Monterey. Soooo tasty for breakf...
09/25/2018

We’ll have this raisin-walnut loaf at the Hands & Harvest Festival October 12th-13th in Monterey. Soooo tasty for breakfast (or the mid-day energizer we just devoured...) #naturalbread #speltflour #yum

Prettiest flower in the garden. What do you think it is?
09/24/2018

Prettiest flower in the garden. What do you think it is?

Oat almond loaves. Continuing to experiment new formulas in the Tonoloway kitchen. #artisanbread #naturallyleavened #soa...
09/19/2018

Oat almond loaves. Continuing to experiment new formulas in the Tonoloway kitchen. #artisanbread #naturallyleavened #soakedgrains

Our lovely merino wool sheep are getting used to life at Tonoloway Farm, and they've quickly learned the routine of rota...
09/17/2018

Our lovely merino wool sheep are getting used to life at Tonoloway Farm, and they've quickly learned the routine of rotational grazing. Moving onto new pasture every 3 days, they rush for the tender clover ☘️ first.

Brioche burger buns for Labor Day Weekend. #artisanstaples
09/03/2018

Brioche burger buns for Labor Day Weekend. #artisanstaples

08/31/2018

Our volunteer insect control team, hard at work first thing each morning. #guineafowl

We’re excited to welcome the newest members of Tonoloway Farm: four beautiful merino ewe lambs. Looking forward to fine ...
08/26/2018

We’re excited to welcome the newest members of Tonoloway Farm: four beautiful merino ewe lambs. Looking forward to fine wool in 2019! #pastureraised #wool #finewool #rotationalgrazing

We're taking reservations for Thanksgiving turkeys! These turkeys are raised on our pastures and fed organically. They w...
08/26/2018

We're taking reservations for Thanksgiving turkeys! These turkeys are raised on our pastures and fed organically. They will be fresh and ready for Thanksgiving at $5/pound.

The turkeys will be available for pick-up on Wednesday Nov. 21st in Monterey and Charlottesville. To reserve a turkey, contact us with your preferred size of turkey. Once we confirm your order we'll ask you to kindly send a $25 turkey deposit.

About the turkeys: We are raising Broad Breasted Bronze turkeys that came from a hatchery in Ohio in mid-June. They started off in a comfortable warm brooder until they were strong enough to roam the pastures. We keep them safe behind electric netting, moving them regularly to fresh grass. In addition to bugs and greens, they eat organic feed from New Country Organics. You are welcome to visit these gobblers (and us!) anytime.

Tonoloway Farm
08/26/2018

Tonoloway Farm

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9943 Highland Turnpike
McDowell, VA
24458

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The Tonoloway Story

We are Tonoloway Farm, located on the rocky, wooded slopes of Bullpasture Mountain in Highland County, VA. We produce forest foods sustainably among the hardwoods of our Appalachian mountain home. These forest foods include syrups from our native trees: maple, black walnut and hickory, as well as mushrooms grown in the forest.

For most of our working lives, we served overseas on humanitarian assignments with the UN and the International Red Cross. Lauren is a data analyst and Christoph manages economic security programs and relief operations. Through a decade abroad in disaster and conflict-affected countries, we found that a community’s greatest asset is their bond and knowledge of place: what grows well, how ancestors lived, and how we must care for it. International aid workers can help, but real recovery comes through homegrown solutions. In 2014 we decided to search for our own place to set roots, finally finding our home in the storied mountains of Highland County, Virginia.

Tonoloway Farm is a dynamic forest farm, and we invite friends and visitors to join and learn with us. We initially came here with visions of frolicking sheep and pastured poultry. It didn’t take long to learn that the mountain will tell us what she wants. This is steep, rocky Appalachian hardwood forest, and the wild shows us what grows well here. Maples, walnuts, mushrooms, and wild fruits abound. Our aim is to grow more of what thrives naturally, while fostering diversity that supports sound ecology. Research indicates that temperate forests can yield double the productivity of grasslands. We aim to experiment, observe, nurture, and help the forests prove their case.

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