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DR Country Club Member of the Month: January 2024

As a member of the Dirigo Ranch Country Club, we want to help promote your farm, ranch, homestead, or related pet services. Please send us along a photo or logo, and a brief summary of your operation. Every month, we'll pick a Country Club Member and promote them across our social platforms.

Many of you have tried our local honey we carry at the Feed & Seed - it's beautiful light amber hue and delectable taste are a perfect combination! We felt that Mark and Abby Hoven of Starling Eaves Farm in North Berwick, ME would be a perfect Country Club Member to share with you all!

The Honey Bees

In 2016, Mark started beekeeping through the Seacoast Beekeepers Association. Over time, he built two apiaries in the Hampton Falls area, producing award-winning light amber honey from the surrounding apple and fruit orchards. Since moving to North Berwick, Mark has developed a local apiary. This summer he had his first harvest of local Maine wildflower honey! Excited by this first harvest and the positive feedback, Mark will be expanding the apiary to increase yearly yields, bringing more local honey to the North Berwick community (and more to Dirigo Ranch Feed & Seed)! Beyond the benefits of the honey production, bee management is a great way to assess the health of the surrounding land. The Hovens track the different types of pollen the bees harvest and the time of the season the different pollens are being brought to the hive. Bees are remarkable creatures and do so much for the health of our natural habitat, and they are happy to cultivate healthy hives for the North Berwick area.

Did you know?

Eating local honey can have health benefits and is a good source of antioxidants! Consuming local honey can help with healing from colds, and may prevent seasonal allergies, along with protecting the body from inflammation. Honey can also be used in skin treatments or hair masks. It's a great source of energy, and has even been noted to prevent accumulation of damaging radicals inside the body. The list goes on for the benefits of these golden drops!

Eating local is good for you!

Starling Eaves Farm

Looking for a little bit of land and a quiet atmosphere, Mark and Abby Hoven moved their family to North Berwick two years ago from Newmarket, NH. In short order, Starling Eaves Farm, named after the flock of starlings that live at their house and barn, was born. They have a sizable flock of chickens and turkeys! They love having a variety of breeds to get colorful eggs to sell and donate (the Hovens frequently supply eggs to Big Love One Community, the local food pantry as well!).

Abby, a graduate of the Maine Master Gardener program through the University of Maine Cooperative Extension in 2023, keeps a big garden and works as a gardener (Clean Slate Gardening) for people who want or need help with weeding, planting, etc. throughout the season. Abby plans to offer homegrown low-cost starter plants and veggies at a cart at the farm in the next couple years.

Mark and Abby are thrilled to be a part of the North Berwick community, and look forward to bringing more honey, eggs, and vegetables to the area! We are so glad to have them around and will continue to carry their locally made honey as long as it is available! Thank you for being part of the Dirigo Ranch family!

Want to join the Dirigo Ranch Country Club? Stop by the Feed & Seed to pick up a Member Card! We'll add you to the club so you can get all of the member bonuses! Stay tuned for next month's member!

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