Back to top

Homer C. Thompson Vegetable Research Farm

More info at CUAES operations site

The Homer C. Thompson Vegetable Research Farm, 10 miles from the Cornell campus, is the site of vegetable research for the Department of Horticulture and also serves several other departments, including Entomology, Plant Breeding and Plant Pathology.  The 200-acre farm (about half is tillable) was purchased by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences in 1961.  The Department of Horticulture is the biggest user of the tillable acreage, with about 50 acres in plots. 

In 2001, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences purchased a 30-acre parcel adjacent to the existing farm which is now the site of organic farming research and certified organic by NOFA-NY Certified Organic LLC. For more information contact Betsy Leonard, CUAES organic farm coordinator: bai1@cornell.edu

The original farms consisted of dairy enterprises that were not especially intensive or modern. Buildings were in poor repair. As money became available, old fence rows and hedges were removed, some buildings were torn down, electric pumps and underground mains for irrigation were installed.  Two machinery sheds and a plastic greenhouse were erected, and on the better fields stones were mechanically picked and hauled away. In 1975 an excellent field laboratory was built on the site of a former farm house, and pesticide storage was added in 1992.

There are two major soil types on the tillable parts of the farm. The dominant one is a Howard gravelly loam, which except for its stones an excellent soil for vegetable research. It does require irrigation, but Fall Creek is available to provide a reliable source of water. There are also about 15 acres of Eel silt loam.

For more information, contact farm manager Steve McKay:  spm8@cornell.edu or (607) 844-8167.

Organic farm field day at the Freeville Farm.