Dragonwood’s mission to bring a little sweetness into the world with its pure honey and pure maple syrup products all started with a beekeeping class given as a unique Christmas gift idea.
The beekeeping classes led to the family starting its own beekeeping operation and producing its own honey, then selling the first samples of Dragonwood honey at the Kokomo Farmers Market in 2009.
Following the honey success at the farmers market, Michael then bought an old 1990s vintage evaporator in 2013 and boiled Dragonwood’s first maple syrup for sale.
Selling that first jar of honey followed by the maple syrup may never have happened without his daughter, Abigail, who was 11 years old in 2009, Michael says.
Abigail is the one who was originally invited to the farmers’ market to sell her creative pipe cleaner fairy dolls, and he just tagged along to sell some honey. Today, the 21-year-old woman owns and operates the Dragonwood business right alongside her dad.
“It’s my daughter’s dream and passion,” Michael says of running the company’s multiple apiaries and sugarbushes with hundreds of hives and thousands of taps in Tipton County.
“She runs our 3-by-12-foot maple evaporator, producing 5-plus gallons of finished syrup an hour, grafts queens for our beekeeping operation, books and staffs our events, etc.,” he adds.
The daddy-daughter duo produces both honey and maple syrup, available in varying sizes and sampler boxes. The company creates its own custom packaging, including professional gift boxes featuring multiple self-produced sugars.
“When I was an automotive engineer in quality control, nobody wanted me to show up. Now my ‘job’ is to play in nature, and then go bring smiles to people’s faces when they try our products,” Michael says. “Way more fun than sitting in a cube.”
Date / Time