Proud to Dairy

Betsy Fleury
  • Female
  • Richford, VT
  • United States
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Fleury's Maple Hill Farm Profile

My husband, Stephen, and I run Fleury's Maple Hill Farm. The farm was bought in 1929 by Stephen's grandfather, Noah Fleury. The dairy barn on the farm was originally built in the 1890's. Our dairy herd is still housed in that barn today, although over the years several additions have made it larger. Noah also built a sugar house and started a maple sugaring operation in 1936. We still use that sugar house for making our maple syrup. Stephen's father and mother, Daton and Virginia Fleury, bought the farm in 1960. They converted the grade, mixed breed dairy herd over to all registered Jerseys. In 1998, my husband and I took over management of this 260 acre rocky, hillside farm. We own the cows and equipment and rent the farm land and buildings from Stephen's parents. Our all registered Jersey herd consists of 35 milking cows and 25 heifers. The herd is rotationally grazed in the summer and housed in the tie-stall barn in the winter. We sell our milk to Agri-Mark/Cabot Cooperative. We also sell Jersey heifers to other farmers for dairy replacements. In addition, we have a 2000 tap maple sugar bush. High vacume pipeline transfers the maple sap to the wood-fired sugar house. The rustic sugar house does not have any electricity and is located a 1/4 mile walk into the sugar woods. We sell our retail maple syrup at the farm house and through the internet and sell our bulk syrup through the Franklin County Maple Sugar Makers Co-op. We really enjoy showing other people our farm and discussing agriculture with them, so we always welcome visitors to Fleury's Maple Hill Farm.

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Betsy Fleury's Blog

Dairy farmers need to stick together!

Posted on October 28, 2016 at 6:29am 0 Comments

Annaliese Wegner wrote an excellent guest blog entitled "There is more than one way to dairy farm" for the October edition of Progressive Dairyman. I agree with her sentiments exactly! Before we sold our herd, we were a third generation, 35 cow, pasture based, tie stall dairy, but we never derided other dairy farmers or the way they chose to run their farms. Now-a-days there are so many different ways to farm - large or small scale farms, high tech or low tech methods and equipment,…

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A great learning experience for children!

Posted on June 8, 2015 at 11:45am 0 Comments

Steve and I are part of the Franklin County Dairy Promotion group, which set up a booth at the Enosburg Falls Dairy Festival this past weekend. Our dairy promotion group borrowed a full size plastic cow statue from the St. Albans Milk Co-op and used her to attract attention to our booth. This cow also had some…

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"Our" cows are happy in their new home!

Posted on May 18, 2015 at 4:36am 0 Comments

We still call them "our" cows even though they are at a new farm now. Joe, the buyer of our herd, just sent us a message and said, and I quote, “I’m so glad that I bought them. I love these girls to death. So much personality. I think that they were the perfect fit for us.” What a great message for us to receive! It almost brought tears to my eyes to know that "our" cows are doing so well and are so well loved! We are extremely happy that we sold our herd to him and not to someone else. We…

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Memories

Posted on January 24, 2015 at 8:10am 1 Comment

I just read Yevet Tenney's article in Progressive Dairyman entitled “Writing Your Memories In Advance”. It asked what kind of memories you would have as a senior citizen while you were sitting in your rocking chair looking back over your life. That got me to thinking about all the memories that Steve and I have made during our 16 years running the farm. There are a lot of really good ones. Seeing a newborn calf stand up for the first time. Watching that…

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Comment Wall (9 comments)

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At 5:42am on August 15, 2012, Owen Nadeau said…

hey betsy, in  northern Vermont we have had a great year, not much rain, but we cant really complain compared to the midwest, nice to hear from you

At 2:05pm on February 13, 2012, Betsy Fleury said…

We have started a Facebook page for our farm. Although I really like "Proud To Dairy" for reaching out to other dairy farmers, we also want to reach non-farm dairy consumers. That is why we started a Facebook page. We will be posting very regularly on there, talking about our way of life on our dairy and maple farm. Since it is almost sugaring season, we will be talking alot about our maple operation. We are going to start tapping this weekend. If you are interested, you can find us on Facebook under "Fleurys Maple Hill Farm".

At 4:55am on February 12, 2012, Ryan Dennis said…

It sounds like a deal!  Thanks!

At 12:08pm on February 11, 2012, Ryan Dennis said…

Hi again Betsy,

Is it alright if I take an excerpt of your comment about The Milk House and put it on the website?  It'll go into a ticker on the homepage.

Keep rocking,

Ryan

At 2:45am on February 1, 2012, Ryan Dennis said…

Hi Bestsy, thanks for the warm welcome!  It's always encouraging to hear that someone reads the column.  It's also good to hear that I'm not the only one that has a dependancy on the radio.  I think perhaps it's good for the soul to belt out whenever one feels like it.  I can imagine the looks I get walking through the college building I'm in now, singing Kenny Rogers outloud (especially the Germans, who don't accept bizareness from foreigners). 

Tell your husband to let me know when he wants to get a band together.  I play a mean electric triangle...

At 11:29am on January 29, 2012, Deja Christine Anton said…

oops!  I just read through your earlier posts and found that it takes you about three hours to complete chores. while ours is 4 and 1/2.  That makes me feel a little better.  Our barn was built in the early 1900's and the cows face head to head.  The youngest calves are housed in hutches a couple hundred yards from the main barn, but protected from the wind.  The older heifers and dry cows are housed in a fairly new loafing shed for the winter.  As I did not know about the "Proud to Dairy" blog, I started a dairy "Facebook" page basically for my non-dairying family all back east, but it is open to the general public.  If interested in our pics and stories, you can log into Facebook, and search Deja View Dairy.  You might get a kick out of our trials and tribulations as "new" dairy farmers.:)

At 11:15am on January 29, 2012, Deja Christine Anton said…

Hi Betsy!  Just curious how you think the sugaring will fair this year with the mild temps?  It has been so warm here, we thought the sap could have been running in January!  Anyways, yes, our Jerseys do the curl their tongue trick--some more than others, but it is hilarious.  Here is a discussion my son and I had this morning, and maybe you could add some input.  Apparently a friend of his whose family also milks 35 head gets all their chores done, including milking in 2 hours flat.  My husband and I start at  5:30 am and are lucky to be in by 10:00 or so after all the morning chores are done.  We are currently milking 44 head, and we have 36 young stock to care for in addition.  Granted, we have to do a lot of handwork, wheelbarrow feed in and such, but are we that inefficient?  My son says we are...if so, we need to find ways to become more efficient.  On days that my husband works off the farm, it takes me nearly 7 hours to complete all the morning chores.  If you don't mind me asking, how long do your morning chores take?

 

At 10:31am on December 13, 2011, Katherine Dotterer-Pyle said…

Yay! Another Allis Chalmers fan! Do you know how hard they are to find? (the fans) We don't have any at my farm but I grew up with them at my family farm. My grandfather started an equipment business years ago and sold only AC tractors and equipment. His collection consists of about 60 and my family still farms with them today. I think he has at least one of every model. (he has 3 6080's-they're my favorite and are Katie-size!) What was your maiden name? My husband doen't recognize the name, which is odd because he knows alot of ppl in Vermont.

At 8:36am on December 5, 2011, Walt Cooley said…

Welcome, Betsy! How did you find us? 

 
 
 

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