Situated on nearly 300 acres of preserved land on the Barre-Oakham border, Renaissance Farms was created from lands belonging to several early Barre farmers. At one time, it was owned by Vernon Willey, Lord Barnby the owner of the Barre Wool Combing Company, and was a summer playground for his family and friends, complete with a cricket pitch. More recently, it has been home to dairy cattle and dairy goats, and was also used to grow landscaping trees.
Renaissance Farms is now a farm scale permaculture project and home to a growing herd of Saanen dairy goats as well as an interesting mix of chickens. We are planning to bring back Icelandic sheep, heritage hogs, turkeys and geese. We have also grazed a herd of Red Devon cattle for Rotokawa Beef for several seasons.
We grow only heirloom varieties of vegetables using organic practices. We don’t use chemicals of any kind. We carefully choose varieties that are particularly suited to our climate and growing conditions. This, along with companion planting and wise spacing help keep pests and disease to a minimum.
In late winter and into early spring, we tap our black birch and maple trees to make syrup. We one of the largest stands of birches outside of Alaska!
We are working on several projects that will increase local access to good food, permaculture education, and more.