Timber Hill Family Farm LLC - 70 acres for lease, with house - Guilford, NH

The Land

Property owner

Farmer or farm family

Location

300 Gunstock Hill Road, Gilford, NH 03249

Total number of acres available with this property

70

Acres of cropland or tillable land

70

Acres of pasture

9

Acres of forested land

220

Farm Information

Water sources present

Available

Types of water sources present

  • Drilled well
  • Irrigation system
  • Pond
  • River/stream

Water sources details

All the cropland we farm has ample water available. The intervale meadow and Dave's have the Gunstock brook flowing along the boundary. This is a medium sized brook that has never dried up in the almost 50 years we have farmed this land. We use portable pumps to supply drip irrigation in both meadows.

The Tilton farm has a small stream that flows along the edge of the meadows. It can get very low during dry spells. We use drip irrigation under black plastic to reduce water needs. We have always managed to get through with this water supply.

The main farm has 2 irrigation ponds of about 300,000 gallons each. There is a drilled well next to the upper pond which produces about 12 gallons a minute. Both ponds will recharge, albeit slowly. One is located about halfway down the slope and the other is near the top of the meadows. There is an underground irrigation system of about 4400 feet of 4" pipe that follows along the edge of the upper meadows and then crosses over to a hedge row in the middle of the meadows and continues to the bottom of the slope. There are 17 hydrants strategically located to supply water to each meadow. 2" irrigation hose is used in places to reach some of the strips. We are able to pump water between the 2 ponds, depending on water needs. We use portable pumps to supply the water. If we are pumping from the upper pond, we use our smallest pump on idle as the drop in elevation will increase the water pressure in the system.

Barns, sheds or other structures

Available

Farm infrastructure details

high tunnels/greenhouses: There are 4 - 28 X 96 greenhouses available, all with complete frames and endwalls. 2 have rollup sides. 4 have oil heat, forced ventilation and computer environmental controls. We have 1 - 21 X 96 house with rollup sides. we haver 1 - 30 X 48 with rollup sides. We have i 15 X 96 high tunnel with rollup sides. And we have 1 - 18 X 40 quonset style greenhouse.

There are 3 barns located at the farmstead. There is a pole style barn built in the 80's. The barn measures 36' wide by 84' long. It is 12 at the eaves. There is a dirt floor and no utilities. It has a trussed roof system and is used for storage of various commodities during the year, and farming equipment in winter. It needs some siding repairs and painting. The roof will need to be replaced in a while. 2 sheds could be built on the eave sides to store more equipment. Owner will make repairs.

The next barn was rebuilt in the 90's to a timber framed style. It measures 50' by 50' and is three stories high. It is used as a car garage. It is an embankment barn and has an unfinished cellar with a dirt floor. The first floor is a temporary pack shed and there is a small greenhouse attached that is a washroom. There is a small workshop and a larger wood working shop. There are two walk-ins on this floor, a freezer and a cooler. The second floor is full of lumber, greenhouse electrical components and family treasures (junk). The frame of the barn is built to allow for a third floor, but it is not built yet.

The third barn is vintage late 1700's/early 1800's timber frame with an eave shed. This is also an embankment farm with a full cellar. The main part of the barn measures 36 feet wide by 72 feet long. It is sixteen feet at the eaves. The shed is on the downhill side and measures 12 feet wide by 72 feet long. It is two stories tall. The cellar is open with a cement floor and is used as a loafing area for cattle with a wood chip pack. The upstairs is currently used for storage. The main barn cellar has a feed bunk in the center that will accommodate 50 head of cattle. There is a shute from upstairs to fill the bunk with hay. The uphill side of the cellar has manure storage with a concrete floor measuring 14 wide by 72 feet long with a 7 foot ceiling. Upstairs are haymows that will hold 3000+ square bales of hay. There is an old tie up for cattle that is being converted to pens for chicks. The barn has water and a temporary electric service. Last year and old shed was removed from the barn and a new replacement will be added next spring/summer. The new building will measure 30' X 30' and will house the permanent electric service, water and heat. It will be insulated and have a concrete floor with drains. The downhill side of the barn has a new concrete foundation installed in the winter of 2022. A new painted steel roof was built on the downhill side of the barn this fall. The other side of the roof was replaced about 12 years ago. The gable end wall facing the road was painted this fall. The rest of the barn will be painted next year. There is an indoor silo that sits on a concrete floor in the cellar and rises to the eave of the barn. It is in excellent condition. There is a large scale in the main floor of the barn at the road end that is in working order.

Farmer housing

Available

Farmer housing details

There is a cape style home with an ell on the farmstead. There are roughly 1900 sf of living space. There can be as many as 4 bedrooms. The 1st floor includes a mud room with a 1/2 bath, a closet hall leading to an office and open concept kitchen/sunroom/living room, and dining room. There is a fireplace in the open area. A full bathroom with laundry and a bedroom round out the 1st floor. The 2nd floor has 3 bedrooms, a full bath, and 2 small walk-in closets. The house was repainted last year. There is a new painted steel roof on most of the house, new siding on the sunroom. The whole house was remodeled in the late 80's with new wiring throughout.

Equipment and machinery

Available

Equipment and machinery details

We have a full line of vegetable equipment, haying equipment, tillage equipment, and logging equipment on a farming scale. Highlights of the equipment inventory include 5 John Deere tractors (all 4-wheel drive), one 110 hp New Holland 4wd tractor for tillage, 2 mulch layers, a transplanter, 2 harrows, vacuum seeder, vacuum packager, scales, walk-ins, etc. All equipment is in operating condition, with a few exceptions ( there is always something being repaired). We do almost all of our repairing. A full list of a large equipment inventory is available upon request.

Is the property enrolled in a current use or other state program that affects property taxes?

Yes

Is the property protected with any type of Conservation Easement?

Yes

Easement details

The property is encumbered by several conservation easements managed by the Society for the Protection of NH Forests. The property was put into easements in several stages, but all the easements are very similar. The use of the properties is limited to agriculture and forestry. The Society visits the property annually and walks the land to see the uses. We meet with the monitor to discuss any plans we might have to make sure they meet the conditions of the easement.

Is there a forest management plan for forestland on the available property?

Yes

Is the property certified organic, or does it qualify for organic certification under federal organic regulations?

No

Tenure Arrangement

Tenure arrangement

  • Property for lease

Property for lease

We are looking for a farmer to continue cropping our farm. We would offer a short lease at first to test compatibility. We would then be willing, with the right person(s), to enter into a long term lease. The details would need to be crafted to meet the specific needs of the parties. This farm is a turnkey operation ready to farm this spring, with markets in place.

Additional Information

Timber Hill Family Farm is located in Gilford, NH on the southern shores of Lake Winnipesaukee, one of the premier vacation areas in New Hampshire. The farm is wholly within a single family residential zone. The farm has been in existence since long, long before any current neighbors were present. We make every effort to be considerate neighbors and as a result we experience minimal complaints. Many of the neighbors and townspeople walk the land for exercise and relaxation. Expansive views are available from the farm's meadows down to the lake, and the mountains beyond. The farm consists of approximately 300 acres of mixed meadows and managed forest land. The farmland has been in constant production since 1784. We have been farming here for over 40 years. Our parents farmed it for 40 years before us. We started as dairy farmers and transitioned to vegetables and beef in the late 80's. We recently sold our farm stand to start retiring. We have adult children who are not interested in farming here and we are looking for a farmer to continue the very long tradition of stuartship of this special ground.

For 2 years we have been transitioning to a wholsale business, still growing vegetables, flowers, beef, chicken, and hay. We have worked for decades at improving the soils, drainage and infrastructure of the land to enhance crop production. Thousands of tons of field stones removed, liberal applications of manure and compost, crop rotation and constant soil testing over the years have resulted in productive soils consistently producing abundant crops. There are several erosion control features designed by NRCS. The main farm cropland is situated on a long, north facing slope. For many years now we have been contour strip farming the majority of this land. There is one 5 acre meadow we do not include in the strip farming because of steep slopes that are prone to erosion. That meadow is in permanent hay production. 

As has been mentioned, the farm is encumbered by conservation easements that limit uses on the property to agriculture. There exists an event venue which operates out of a barn located at the edge of the woods by the meadows. The barn and immediate grounds are used to host mostly weddings during the summer months. Among many restrictions is the requirement that the food for the meals at the events comes from the farm, as much as possible. During the summer season at least 30% of the meals, on average, must originate on the farm. The preferred caterers for these meals are chosen based on their ability to produce farm-centric menus. So, any farming that happens on the farm must include enough specific crops to satisfy this event requirement. Meats would qualify for the 30%. 

Soils - The primary soils of the meadows at the farmstead  are Canterbury, prime ag soils. There are a few patches of Metacomet on the fringes of the meadows. The 8 acre pasture has Canterbury soils of local importance that are very stony. The Tilton farm has primarily Champlain soils of local importance. As the meadows climb up the hillside the soils change to Henniker and Henniker soils of local importance. Down at the Intervale meadow the majority of the soils are Podunk that are prime ag when not flooded. There are also Rumney soils that are not prime. Dave's has Champlain soils that are of local importance. The Allen's meadow has Canterbury soils of local importance.

Markets - After the second season of transitioning from retail to wholesale, our markets are expanding. Our markets include grocery stores, mom and pop neighborhood stores, restaurants, farm stands, food hubs, institutions, and bulk buyers. Our largest customer is Hannaford supermarkets. We sell to 13 Hannaford stores in the central New Hampshire region. We also have a farm to table venue on the farm and provide product to caterers for nearly 20 events.

Last summer's sales were up almost 30% over 2022 in the face of the worst weather growing season we have ever had. We could not supply the demand we had. With a little break from Mother Nature, we should see significant growth again next season. 

 

Date posted

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