Mapleleaf, Hebron, CT

Since the mid 1700’s, farming has been a way of life for the Ellis family.

Mapleleaf - Hebron, CT

Mapleleaf, Hebron, CTSince the mid 1700’s, farming has been a way of life for the Ellis family. After moving from other sites within the town of Hebron, Ned Ellis’ great grandfather purchased Mapleleaf farm in 1903. As a result, Mapleleaf has received the Century Farm Award, presented to family farms in operation over 100 years.

The Ellis family has seen dramatic changes since the days when farming was the way of life for most New Englanders. During the early years, the farm raised chickens, vegetables and fruit, as well as dairy cows. Today, with a herd of 500 Holstein cows, dairy production is the farm’s focus. The main crops are now hay and corn grown as feed for the herd.

The Ellis’ have been good stewards of land and resources. They recently installed solar panels to generate approximately 40% of the electricity needed to operate the farm. They have protected 450 acres from development, ensuring farming will continue there for generations to come.

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The Cushman Family

Ned Ellis

When Ned graduated from UCONN in 1965 the farm was milking just 50 cows. He is proactive with keeping town officials and elected state legislators informed about the benefits of preserving greenbelts of open space and farmland. He appreciates the beauty of the land, and is gratified when others share that love.

Ned is a delegate for the New England Dairy Promotion Board and a member of Very Alive, a group that promotes understanding of Connecticut agriculture. Ned loves playing with his grandchildren, enjoys singing, and is actively involved at the Gilead Congregational Church. You’ll also find Ned in the stands at most UConn basketball games each season. He and his wife have three children.