There is an effort underway to connect residents of Durham to the fertile land that surrounds them.
Durham's Agricultural Commission is working with the town to establish Durham Grown, a local version of CT Grown, a website that provides useful information about products grown and harvested throughout the state.
Durham Grown, which will eventually be available through the town's website, will focus on local farms and the agricultural products and services they offer, including farm stands, orchards and stables.
Durham Agricultural Commissioner Warren Herzig says consumers will be able to enter keywords of interest in order to find the location of farms that sell things like corn, or tomatoes for example.
"A number of people have said, 'I really don't know what's available locally,' so hopefully we can serve the people producing and the people looking to buy it," explains Herzig.
In order for their information to appear on Durham Grown, local farms (and businesses) must fill out a form available on the town's website (the form is also available in PDF, to the right of this article) and submit it to the Town Clerk's office.
"I think people that I know, I will probably encourage them to participate," Herzig says. "Maybe keep some of the forms in my truck and just spread it through word of mouth."
The Agriculture Commission is also looking to establish a Community Garden, which would provide a space for residents to grow and maintain personal gardens.
While a permanent location for a Community Garden has yet to be determined, commission members are reviewing several town owned open space locations as options.
In the meantime, the town is asking anyone interested in participating in the Community Garden to fill out a form (see attached PDF file) available on the town's website.
"There are a few condominiums, active adult housing and some people who have lots in the shade who have difficulty growing their own vegetables. Maybe if there's enough interest we could sponsor this on town property, but right now we’re just trying to gauge the interest," Herzig says. "We'd need a minimum of 12 to 15 people to do this."
Herzig also explained that, should enough interest in the program arise, local farmers could donate their time to help plow the area and the town would find someone to divide the plot into sections.
For more information or to register for either of the programs, stop by Town Hall.