Livestock farmer stories, tips, and resources for success.
April 29, 2023

Hank & Heather LeTarte Listen to Their Customers

Hank & Heather LeTarte Listen to Their Customers

“We cleared eight acres and piled the trees by hand. Not the trees but the brush.  We had 96 brush piles in one field. And we had no friends left, because we would say to them, ‘Come on over for the weekend. And we'll give you beer and pizza and you can help us pile the brush.’ Nobody would even answer the phone.”


Hank and Heather LeTarte of White Gates Farm in New Hampshire started clearining their land in 1982 out of largely pine woods and a prospective view. They built a home, a family, and a family around their farm. When their kids grew up, Hank & Heather's life as farmers didn't stop, it just changed as their customers, labor availability, and goals evolved.


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Hank and Heather Letarte


Hank and Heather were married in 1982, have four children, and 8 grandchildren. Hank was raised in Harvard Massachusetts, and went to UMass Amherst and earned a degree in agronomy and landscape and golf course management. He spent 3 years on the Alaskan pipeline, and move to New Hampshire shortly after his return, where he started a small excavation business, which then turned into a design-build landscape company after meeting Heather, who helped him with his business. They found a piece of wooded property at about the same time as they married, and built a home on the property. They cleared land for a field, and raised Scotch Highland cattle for a awhile at the same time as running the landscape and hydroseeding business. Eventually, they planted Christmas trees and started an annual pumpkin patch, where folks came and picked their own pumpkins. They had to have several income streams from various endeavors to make ends meet. Today, the property has been customized to meet the needs of their every changing business. They raise pigs in the woods, have raised chickens on the pasture in movable "tractors", raised Blonde D' Acquitaine beef cattle, and keep laying hens. They now have seven cottages onsite, and summer weekends will find them hosting pizza nights on the farm, as well as hosting weddings. They raise flowers and vegetables in their high tunnels and gardens, and have recently planted an apple orchard and blueberry and raspberry garden for "pick your own", which should open in 2025.