BORROWER PROFILE: Maple Hollow Tree Farm
Maple Hollow is a multigenerational cut-your-own Christmas tree farm in New Hartford, CT, operated for 37 years by the Steadman family. Situated in the narrow Nepaug Valley, Maple Hollow produces trees on 19 of its 22 acres of prime soil. The Steadmans' sustainable management techniques includes basal pruning of trees by hand, no herbicide or insecticide use, and strategic integrated pest management (IPM) to foster healthy insect populations.
The Steadmans are planning to serve an increasing customer base with an improved on-site experience and an increase in available stock. Established plantings coming into production will result in an additional 1000 trees ready for sale each year, in addition to pre-cut trees the Steadmans buy in from elsewhere in New England, a significant increase over the 250 trees cut in recent years.
Considering that customer visits to the sites are compressed to three or four weekends per year, Maple Hollow constructed a separate exit and expanded the parking area to accommodate the anticipated increase in customer access. The loan funds from The Carrot Project were used to create this separate exit and expanded parking area, complete drainage work, and purchase needed equipment, including a wreath maker and brush hog.
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