Suffield's 60-acre Stiles Farm is one of two Connecticut farms whose acreage will be perpetually preserved for agriculture, state ag officials say.
The state department of Agriculture said Thursday that Stiles Farm and New Milford's 53-acre Triple Creek Farm are now covered under the state's Farmland Preservation Program.
Located on Mapleton Avenue, near the Massachusetts border, Stiles Farm is leased by the neighboring Bielonko Farms, which grows hay, tobacco, sweet corn and other vegetables, officials said.
Almost all of the 50 acres of Stiles' cropland is prime and important farmland soil, said Ag Commissioner Steven Reviczky. The farm is also surrounded by more than 1,000 acres of active farmland within a two-mile radius.
Under the preservation agreement, no houses may be built on the Stiles property, but construction of a tobacco shed in its historic location on the farm will be allowed.
Stiles is the 20th farm to be protected in Suffield under the state program, encompassing nearly 1,900 acres, Reviczky said.
In New Milford, Triple Creek Farm raises hay for grass-fed beef cattle raised by Stuart Family Farm of Bridgewater, which leases cropland at the farm and is one of the largest grass-fed beef operations in Connecticut, he said.
The town of New Milford and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture's Natural Resource Conservation Service were partners in the preservation.
More than 43,000 acres on about 335 farms have been protected under the state program, including nearly 880 acres in Litchfield County.
Triple Creek Farm's 1779 farmhouse, restored by current owners Art and Marcia Patterson, and its historic hay barn were also included in the preservation project.