Buxton’s agricultural heritage dates to its founding in 1750. Gently rolling forest lands and woods were cleared for useable pasture; loam-laden soils were worked to support a diverse agrarian economy. The Salmon Falls village area along the Saco River was the first settlement. By the early-to-mid 1800s the village was divided into smaller farms supporting a wide variety of farm animals and crops. For over a century, this property (known as the Merrill-Dennett Family House and farm) supported generations who lived here. At one point, a modest poultry house stood in the side yard; profits from egg sales helped support the owners. From WWII to 2014, successive owners managed vegetable gardens and sold or donated pasture hay to the neighbors. Since 1997, the current owners have envisioned returning the property to its origin as a small working farm.
In July 2014, the owners partnered with Maine Farmland Trust (through Maine FarmLink) with the goal of leasing the property to young farmers as a start-up organic business. This collaboration attracted the four owners of Bumbleroot Farm. By 2015, Bumbleroot earned MOFGA's (Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association) coveted organic certification by using sustainable farming practices to improve the health of the soil and the integrity of the land. Their farming management included the use of only organic fertilizers and soil amendments, planting organic seeds whenever available, cover cropping the fields and rotating their crop plantings. Bumbleroot Organic Farm’s success exceeded their initial expectations to the point where they were able to purchase a 90 acre “Forever Farm” in Windham, by providing a comprehensive business plan to the Maine Farmland Trust, who in turn selected their winning purchase proposal.
The Bumbleroot team has this to say of the historic Merrill-Dennett Family House and farm and their organic certification: “We’re proud to call our vegetables, flowers, and herbs organic. For the 2016 season we are growing over 40 varieties and many are for sale at the Portland Farmers' Market, the Saco Farmers' Market, the Kittery Community Market and through our CSA. We have fresh crops coming out of the fields as well as vegetable and herb seedlings and cut flower bouquets. Both our vegetable and flower CSAs have reached capacity; our veggie members receive 20 weeks of produce and our flower members received 10 weeks of carefully crafted bouquets- and everything is 100% grown on the farm!”
The Merrill-Dennett Family House and farm was built c.1836 and has retained its historic character with sensitive updating to serve modern living needs. This is a classic New England center hall-double parlor connected cape with 2,645 square feet. The house features 4 bedrooms, including a newer second floor master bedroom suite with ample storage, two full baths, kitchen, living room, dining room/library, family room and usable cellar. A new roof covers all structures including the attached two and a half story timber frame barn with stall and hay loft. The water supply is from a 285' artesian well.
The central heating system is fuel oil/forced air (located in cellar) and an efficient wood burning stove with a brick hearth is located in the kitchen. Four fireplaces with original mantles are located in the living room, parlor and two upstairs bedrooms. All appliances are included and laundry is conveniently located off the kitchen.
Architectural features include original wood-panel doors, window trim and baseboards; wide wooden floorboards throughout and unique curved plaster walls in the center hall and parlor. A lovely covered side porch with turned columns and railing serves as the primary side entrance and looks onto the drive and hosta garden. Freshly painted, the property is in turn-key condition. The original attached Yankee barn showcases 19th century timber framing and was enlarged c.1890. It has an 11x13 stall, wood shed, hay loft, barn ladders, four doorways and plenty of room for farm activities, small boat storage and creative ventures! The original two-hole privy is ideal for garden tool storage. The property has numerous mature trees and shrubs and is located in the Salmon Falls National Historic District along the Saco River.
With watching the success of the current Organically Certified farmers, the neighbors have been ever so generous to lease out more growing land on either side of the farm. This arrangement can be carried over to the new farmers, giving them an extra 2 acres of growing space, totaling 4 acres!
Priced at $239,000
“The information herein is believed to be accurate, but not warranted and should be verified by the buyer.”
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