Farm of the Month: Abenaki Springs Farm

By Jan Sevene, Monadnock Localvore Project

Abenaki Springs Farm
188 Upper Walpole Rd.
Walpole, NH

If you think early fall wraps up the season for enjoying locally grown vegetables, think again! Extending the season is a real option.

Erin and Bruce Bickford of Abenaki Springs Farm are in their fourth year of offering a Winter CSA. “There was a demand for it, so we opened it up based upon that demand,” says Erin Bickford. “We have a very high return rate. People are definitely happy with it, because they keep coming back.”

What makes their CSA customers happy? It’s about the quantity and variety they receive. “Every week we have something they can use right now, and things they can put away until later. We lay it out so that it makes sense by providing all the information they need for storing it away for later so they don’t have to eat it all at once. People don’t feel overwhelmed by the size of the box, and they can call anytime with any questions,” Bickford says.

From their three 100-foot greenhouses (one this year providing tomatoes, peppers, eggplants and sweet potatoes), they offer all the root vegetables. There are potatoes, beets, carrots, etc. Among their many Brassicas are broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and turnips. From the “greens” category come kale, collards, spinaches, lettuces, which include mesclun of varied mixes, for example spicy or a more mild and crispy oriental mix. Add to all this, herbs, winter squashes and pumpkins.

Abenaki Springs’ CSA boxes can be picked up at the farm, or at their Hannah Grimes pick-up point in Keene. So if you’d like to take advantage of an Abenaki Springs Farm’s generous CSA, make that call ASAP, as there are only a few shares left.

Other farm-direct Winter CSAs:
Picadilly Farm, 264 South Parrish Road, Winchester, NH 03470

Stonewall Farm, 242 Chesterfield Rd., Keene, NH 03431

Tracie’s Community Farm, 72 Jaffrey Rd., Fitzwilliam, NH 03447

Farmstands & Year-Round Markets

Farm Stands in Cheshire County

High Hopes Orchard – Joanne/Bruce Smith, 582 Glebe Rd., Westmoreland 03467, 603-399-4305,, 9am-6pm, July-October; 10am-5pm, November-December. Raspberries, blueberries, apples & pumpkins. Peaches in August. Special Events: Farm adventure entertainment park-September-October. Includes animals, rides, haunted barn, day time spooky ride through woods (narrated); train, snack bar, September-October; ice cream, July.

Monadnock Berries – Anthony/Fenella Levick, 545 West Hill Rd., Troy 03465, 603-242-6417, 8am-8pm, daily, July-August; 9am-5pm, daily, September. Fresh picked blueberries, fresh farm grown tomatoes, cucumbers, blueberry china, tree ripened peaches, black currants, red currants, gooseberries, baking mixes, Annie’s jams, jellies, Sanford’s jams & jellies, ice cream, coffee, sodas, fruit drinks, Smith’s farm cheese, local honey, candy mixes, deluxe soup mixes & fresh baked items.

Rosaly’s Farmstand – Rosaly Bass, Route 123 (just south of Rte. 101), Peterborough 03458, 603-924-7774,,, 9am-6pm, daily, May 18-October 14.  Bedding plants, 100 varieties of flowers, culinary & medicinal herbs, mesclun salad mix, six varieties of lettuce, tomatoes: regular & cherry tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, beets, leeks, onions, garlic, carrots, spinach, Swiss chard, peas: garden & snap peas, potatoes: red norland, yukon gold, blue & sweet potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussel sprouts, cabbage, zucchini, yellow squash, cucumbers, winter squash, pumpkins, gourds, melons, raspberries & blueberries. Certified organic . Other local products such as honey, maple & cheese.

The Apple Place – Roger Bienvenu, 781 Old Walpole Rd., Surry 03431, 603… 10am-6pm, August 25-October 15. Several varieties of apples available.

Alyson’s Orchard Farmstand – Susan Jasse, Route 12, Wapole, 03608, 603-756-9800.  Opens in late summer!

View farmstands in other counties at:

Other Area Farmstands
From Monadnock Farm & Community Connection Inventory

Bee Tree Farm – 603-363-4631,  Chesterfield,,

Boggy Meadow Farm – 603-756-3300, Walpole,,

Green Wagon Farm – Upper Court St., Keene, open seven days a week, Monday-Friday 10-6 p.m., weekends 10-5 p.m.

Herban Living Farm – 603-878-0459, Temple,,

Hidden Birch Farm –  603-827-2950, Nelson,,

Maple Lane Farm – 603-352-2329, Keene,

The Milkhouse at Great Brook Farm – 603-756-3661, Walpole, hours: 7:30-8:00, 7 days a week.

Pete’s Farm Stand – Route 12, Walpole, 802-885-6443.

Stonewall Farm Farm Stand –  opens on 5/23! Hours are M-F 2-7 and Sat., Sun 10-7. The farmstand features Stonewall Farm raw milk, vegetables, syrup and other locally made products including coffee, jelly, honey, soaps, ice cream, etc. 603… x.103,, Visit us on the web at:

The Farm on South Main – Troy, 603-242-7865

Tracie’s Community Farm Farmstand – opens Friday, May 1st, 7a.m., Fitzwilliam.  Vegetables, herbs and flower transplants through mid-June and then vegetables through mid-October.  All grown without the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides or fungicides.  For more information, contact Tracie Smith

Walpole Valley Farms – 603-756-2855, Walpole,,

White’s Farm Stand & Sugarhouse – Rt. 119, West Rindge, 603-899-5000

Year-Round Markets

Hannah Grimes Marketplace – Keene

24 Carrots Farm Stand – Swanzey

Blueberry Fields – Keene

Coll’s Farm Stand –  Jaffrey

Some Benefits of Farmers’ Markets

The number of farmers markets in the United States continues to grow, reports USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), reaching a total of 4,685 in August 2008. This represents a 6.8 percent increase since mid-August 2006, when AMS reported 4,385 farmers markets nationwide.
SOURCE: Agricultural Marketing Service Program Announcement, Washington, Sept. 19, 2008

In a 2002 survey of over 800 customers from a variety of indoor and open-air markets around the country, it was discovered that 60% of market shoppers also visited nearby stores on the same day; of those, 60% said that they visited those additional stores only on days that they visit the market.
SOURCE: Public Markets Phase I Report: An Overview of Existing Programs and Assessment of Opportunities

Farmers’ markets can have a substantial impact on farmers’ incomes. According to a report prepared for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, gross returns to farmers from farmers’ market sales are between 200 and 250 percent higher than sales to distributors and wholesalers. Whereas farmers earn $22 for each $100 spent by consumers for food, that amount increases to $30 with direct marketing methods.