Hillcrest Farm


Hillcrest Farm est. 1810

“Home is the nicest word there is.” ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder

Since childhood, after reading Wilder’s books about the Wisconsin woods, I dreamed of owning a farm.

L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables reinforced that dream, even though I’d grown up hearing my mother talk about those frigid NH mornings of milking cows and tending to livestock, trudging through waist-high snow drifts and scooting to the outhouse in the icy dark. Mom prided herself a “farm girl,” so strong and capable, hence muscular arms and powerful hands were things not seen as masculine or unbecoming but were rather useful and necessary. We New Englanders like being seen as independent, self-reliant, industrious, resourceful, and stoic. Thus, I suppose that part of my identity took root quite early, even though no conscious part of me strove to be a farmer or homesteader per se.

We bought the farm in 2013.

Hillcrest Farm’s long history dates back to the Karr Farm in Grasmere, NH, with the purchase of the land by Elnathan Whitney from James Karr in 1789. The structure and land we now own and occupy were given by Elnathan to his daughter Betsey, when she married Joseph Poore in 1810, a wedding gift. The original King’s grant and the property has ties to General John Stark and the Revolutionary War, namely service at Bunker Hill. The earliest section of the house dates back to the late 18th Century, with additions and updates made during the 19th Century and so on.

Since acquiring the land, we have installed an orchard and expanded the perennial gardens quite extensively.

We now have 21 fruit trees, ranging from apples, peaches, pears, and cherries, to apricots and plums. Berries vary from raspberry, blackberry and strawberries to blueberries, while Concord and red seedless table grapevines stretch across fields and bowers. Shaded pocket gardens protect many varieties of hostas, and unique specimens of lady slippers, Japanese maples, hollyhocks and foxgloves can be found, while large swaths of wildflower fields attract birds, bees, and butterflies.

This blog will detail that ever-evolving landscape, projects, and amateur homesteading, as a creative and spiritual outlet for this introverted academic (INFJ PhD).

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