The Valcour farm on Randolph Road in Morristown has been conserved and sold to its new owners.
In mid-April, the 175-acre farm was conserved by family members and sold to longtime farmers Jesse and Marlene Hursh with assistance from the Vermont Land Trust and support from Stowe Land Trust.
The Hurshes have rented a dairy farm and operated a popular farmstand off of Stagecoach Road for over 20 years. They will grow corn and cover crops on the new farm, which has excellent agricultural soils. They also plan to use the former Valcour barn for raising young cattle.
“Assuming stewardship of this farm is special to us as we fondly remember Andre Valcour Sr. Andre was a friend and mentor who went out of his way to help us succeed in agriculture,” said Jesse Hursh. “The location is ideal for expanding our retail sales of produce, fruits and dairy products.”
The property also includes a sugarbush and access to the Catamount Trail, a haven for wildlife and cross-country skiers. A 20-acre wetland protection zone harbors a well-known heron rookery.
The Valcour family is thrilled that the Hurshes can own the farm after renting for many years, and that the land is protected for wildlife and future generations.
“The family has rented fields from us for more than 12 years. We know that they work hard and respect the land and the animals,” said Simonne Eisenhardt, one of seven Valcour children. “It is with great pride and pleasure that we conserve the land for agriculture and pass it to their capable hands.”
“We see how land is getting more and more expensive and particularly out of reach for farmers and we want to keep the working landscapes of our Vermont home,” said Eisenhardt.
The farm’s conservation and affordable transfer to the next generation of farmers would not have been possible without support and funding from the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Stowe Land Trust.
Stowe Land Trust also helped the Valcour family conserve a rare bog on their land next to Joe’s Pond in Morristown in 2007. Both the bog and pond are conserved with Stowe Land Trust.