Thistlecroft is an ecologically focused family-run farm. We use natural methods to cultivate our gardens and pastures. We hold high standards of animal welfare and use low-stress animal handling methods.

Core Principles
1. Respect for local ecology emphasizing reciprocal relationships with nature.

2. Build soil through low-impact cultivation and harvesting methods, feeding soil with plant and animal residue (composted plant and animal waste).

3. Waste reduction with an emphasis on reuse of materials. Being cognizant of what we bring onto the farm and seizing opportunities to reuse waste packaging such as baling twine and other people's (clean) egg cartons.

4. Thoughtfully (re)designing how we approach farm chores and activities to lessen the physical demands on the human animals on the farm.

5. Embrace change, being open to compromises, respecting limits and stopping even if it seems like the momentum is too great.

6. Having fun and experimenting with ways of doing and ways of being.

River, Ali, Oblio and Holly.


Ali Lam and River Barwick

Phone: 705-488-1423

Email: farmers(a)

Location 845 Galway Road
Trent Lakes ON
K0M 2A0

We are approximately 2.5hrs from Downtown Toronto.

1.5 hrs from Barrie.

Just over an hour from Peterborough.

Our farm is just over 6 kms east off of HWY 121.

Galway Road is 6 kms south of the town of Kinmount.

Kinmount is 1/2 hr south of Minden; 50 mins southwest of Haliburton;
1/2 hr north of Bobcaygeon and 40 mins northeast of Fenelon Falls.

Farm Boutique
Our Farm Boutique is at the front of our driveway. It is just being finished and will feature a sheltered area for you to peruse our seasonal produce and handmade products.

You may park in our driveway or on the road, but do be careful of traffic.

Also be aware of our two dogs which may come and greet you from behind the driveway gates - they are all bark and kisses!

Learn more about the Boutique here.



Thistlecroft Farm Boutique... still under construction.
Thistlecroft is a proud member of the Ecological Farmers Association of Ontario and the National Farmers Union.

Why and What is Thistlecroft?

Bull thistle in bloom.
Croft is a Scottish term for a small farm which may be rented or owned by the 'crofter', often in the north of Scotland which traditionally raised sheep and cattle. The average size of a croft is around 5 hectares (12 acres) but some are smaller or much larger.

Thistles make up a group of flowering plants in the Aster Family (Asteraceae) characterized by sharp prickles on the leaves, stems and/or flowers of the plant. The most common types of thistles found at Thistlecroft are bull thistles, sow thistles and blessed thistles.

Thistles seeds are grown and sold commercially as Nyjer seed in bird seed mixes which attract finches. We have seen this for ourselves as we watch acrobatic golden finches eating the seeds right off the plant! The thistle is also the national emblem of Scotland

Thistlecroft - a small farm with thistles, describes what our land grows and is also an apt metaphor of our relationship to farming. Thistles are symbolically associated with protection and this is how we see our roles as 'crofters': to protect the land, animals and plants we share this space with. Ultimately it is the land that protects us all and hence why we need to respect and nurture the land and all its inhabitants big and small.

We find thistles to be very pretty but they can be quite prickly! In this regard, thistles are like our relationship with nature: to truly grasp the beauty of nature, one must not only admire the flowers but to also appreciate the thorns.

Lastly, we also like how similar the word 'croft' is to 'craft' as we believe that farming is a type of craft. To farm well is to learn; it is to work with your hands to cultivate the land and the self. We also practice other types of handicrafts which compliments our farming and what the land provides us to use and enjoy.

For more information about animal handling and animal welfare:

National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) - Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Sheep

Temple Grandin Ph.D
- Designer of livestock handling facilities, developer of animal welfare guidelines, author of many books, Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University, autisim spokesperson.

Farm Boutique Open May to October, 24/7

845 Galway Road, Kinmount, Ontario


Eggs - Chicken
Eggs - Duck
Seasonal Produce

Wool Info
Natural Dyes
Wood Products
Iron Products
Felted Products

Craft Shows

Contact us:
farmers (at)