Events of Interest May 31, 2024

Dear Friends and Acton Conservation Trust Members,

This week a group of  7 enjoyed a perfect afternoon for a walk of the yellow trail at Will’s Hole, at the end of Nagog Park Drive.   Read more about these Wednesday walks at the “I Hiked Acton Trails Challenge” announcement  – the next is June 5.
Pitcher Plant Blooms:  It was exciting to see these pitcher plant flowers blooming near the bog at Will’s Hole this week.     What is a Carnivorous Plant?

“Unlike most plants that absorb vital nutrients directly from the soil, carnivorous plants grow in habitats like bogs that are low in nitrogen and other substances needed for growth. They survive by trapping and eating nutritious animals such as insects and small crustaceans.  Look for the purple pitcher plant (Sarracenia purpurea) amongst sphagnum mosses in a bog or other acidic wetland. During spring and summer, it produces a 2-inch-wide green and red flower that looks like a hovering UFO.

Its vase-shaped leaves are 4-10 inches long. Peer inside one of these leaves and you’ll see a bacteria-laden soup. Insects fall into this fluid and are digested; they can’t escape because the walls are lined with downward-pointing hairs.”

The following events may be of interest:

Now Through June 15 
Acton Garden Club Supports The Garlic Mustard Pull!  
Everywhere in Acton, MA  
Do you have this pretty plant with lovely white flowers blooming in your woods, garden, by your mailbox on your road?  It’s Garlic Mustard.   Look for it!  Once you see it, you cannot unsee it! 
What is Garlic Mustard?  It is a non-native invasive plant from Europe that takes over, destroys soil, and prevents the growth of native species,
wildflowers, and other plants in our woodlands, conservation areas & the Acton Arboretum.  
Look for it in your yard or by your mailbox and the roadside! 
Pull it while flowering with the roots before it goes to seed in June and spreads.
Every Plant Counts! The big ones and the little ones! 
Dispose of it in black plastic bags in the trash or special area at the transfer station. 
Eat it!  it is edible!  Clean the leaves thoroughly.  Recipes on the Internet. 
For more information, go to  or

Garlic Mustard

Now through May 31
No Mow May –  (To Prevent Habitat Loss)  
Did you know that 2% of the U.S. is covered in lawn? That’s 40 million acres! And that’s a problem because lawns are not habitat. They don’t provide good food or shelter to wildlife. Habitat loss is one of the many causes of pollinator decline.Join in “No Mow May” and commit to letting the flowers bloom in your lawn this month! Studies show that unmown lawns host a greater diversity of bumblebees and have an overall higher abundance of pollinator visitors.
Better yet, mow less frequently throughout the summer.  Plants such as Self Heal, Violets, Clover, and Wild Strawberry add color, beauty, and ecological value to a lawn. 
Best of all, consider replacing some or all of the lawn with native plants.  Native ground covers, once established, form a beautiful and low maintenance lawn alternative.  So don’t dust off your mower just yet!  Let’s let the flowers bloom first!  Learn more about “No Mow May” here.  Check out this nice list of native ground covers for both shady and sunny areas. 

Saturday, June 1
Spring nature walk with storyteller and naturalist, Roland “Boot” Boutwell
Join ACT for a spring nature walk with  our favorite storyteller and naturalist, Roland “Boot” Boutwell. Boot will lead us on a walk of 1-2 miles, identifying plants and trees along the way. Parking information and meeting location will be sent a few days before the event.
This is a members only event. If you’re not a member, please join here before registering. This event is free and children aged 5 and over are welcome. Registration is limited to 15 people. Click here to register.  
If you have questions, please contact Jody Harris at

Saturday June 1
Emmet Woods Guided Hike, Westford
9:00 – 10:30 am 
Park at Mass Audubon Nashoba Brook Parking, 196 Concord Road, Westford, MA 01886Trail Description: Join Trust director Gerry DiBello on a walk through Emmet Woods. Park at the Mass Audubon lot across from 29 Banbury Drive. After crossing Route 225, explore the trails built by Dick and his wife Alan Emmet. Stare into Cave Rock, admire the Folly, enjoy the bench set apart by columns. The trails are not challenging, but comfortable shoes are suggested. Please note that pets are not allowed.
Mass Audubon Nashoba Brook Wildlife Sanctuary’s trail system expanded to include Emmet Woods (across Route 225) in 2017 thanks to the generosity of the Emmet family. For more information about the trail click here. Our guided hikes take place rain or shine!

Saturday, June 1
Hazardous Waste Day

Wednesday,June 5
I Hiked Acton’s Trails Challenge
2:30 pm-4:00 pm
Location sent out the Sunday before each hike. 
Walk (or wheelchair) trails in Acton’s conservation areas with the goal of earning a sticker and a sew-on patch! This weekly set of walks is a joint effort between Acton Conservation Department and Acton Conservation Trust. We hope to complete 9 of 22 conservation land walks and may continue the challenge next fall. 
All ages are welcome!, Register for one hike or all nine!   All children must be accompanied by an adult.
REGISTER HERE! For more information or questions, please contact Jody Harris at or Ian Bergemann at

Thursday, June 6
The Lincoln Conservation Coffee (Zoom)
8:30 AM 
The Lincoln Conservation Coffee will welcome Lawrence Buell.  Buell will talk about his most recent book, “Henry David Thoreau: Thinking Disobediently.” After Buell’s remarks, we will give brief updates on recent conservation projects. Use the direct zoom link here to join the call!

Thursday, June 6
What’s the Buzz on Beekeeping?
6:30—8:00 PM
Join John Hedly from Hedly Honey for an amazing introductory class on beekeeping! Funded by the AML Foundation.   AML Meeting Room
Click  here to register.

Thursday, June 6
How to Use the Maynard Kayak Rental Station
7:00—8:00 PM
Maynard Library.  In person. 
Last summer, Maynard installed a Kayak Rental Station at Ice House Landing. It’s the first kayak rental station on the Assabet River, and the first self-serve rental station in Massachusetts. Julia Flanary, Maynard’s Conservation Agent and Assistant Town Planner, will explain how to use the station, including the smartphone app which allows you to pay for and unlock the kayak, paddle, and life preserver from a locker. Learn More.

Fridays, June 7tth 14th and 21st
Nara Park Senior Stroll Acton, Boxboro, Littleton Seniors
10:00 -11:00am
Nara Park, 25 Ledgerock Way, Acton
Come join other seniors from Acton, Boxboro and Littleton Council’s on Aging for conversation, coffee and a stroll around Acton’s Nara Park,
Please meet us at the Sports Pavilion off the upper parking lots located off Quarry Road. To sign up, please call Nursing at 978-929-6650. Registration is required.

Saturday, June 8 
Acton Climate Resilience Festival 
1-4 PM 
Gardner Field, West Acton 
Activities for All ages, food, music, Acton Climate Festival

Saturday, June 8
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Sudbury Valley Trustees, 18 Wolbach Road, Sudbury MA 01776
Snakes of New England and the World – one hour live animal presentation.

Saturday, June 8 
National Trails Day 
National Trails Day on the first Saturday in June recognizes all the incredible benefits federal, state and local trails provide for recreation and exposure nature. Events held throughout the United States help promote awareness of the wide variety of services the trails systems offer. The day encourages people to discover their local trials, become active concerning trail issues, and share their excitement for the outdoors.
Visit for more information.

Monday, June 10 
Acton 250 Historic House Series:  Nathaniel Edwards House
7-8:30 PM
Meeting Room A&B Acton Memorial Library, 486 Main Street, Acton, MA, 01720
The second event in the Acton 250 series “Still Here: Houses of Our Patriots” will be a presentation about the Nathaniel Edwards House, 328 Pope Road. The speaker will be the house’s co-owner, David Hardt, who has done extensive research on this mid-18th century center-chimney building. 

Friday June 14
MLTC Conservation Partners Meeting
10:00 am – 12:15 pm,
TTOR’s Doyle Center, 464 Abbott Avenue Leominster MA, and via Zoom 
Land trust staff and board members as well as conservation partners are welcome to this quarterly meeting, featuring relevant news from state agencies, a timely update on state and federal policy matters, announcements, and a featured topic. This month, Massachusetts Department of Fish and Wildlife Commissioner Tom O’Shea will talk about progress in establishing Biodiversity Goals for the Commonwealth. Formerly known as “Steering Committee Meetings”, these meetings are convened by MLTC’s Partner Engagement Committee: Kathy Orlando, Chair, Olivia Lukacic, Vice-Chair. To attend via Zoom,  register.

Saturday, June 15
PlugIN Tour: Clean Energy Home of the Month – Two Fossil Fuel-Free Homes
Two sessions: 11am and 1pm
West Acton address sent with registration.
Reducing our use of fossil fuels matters for the natural world. This month’s Energize Acton home tour features two neighbors who have disconnected their natural gas lines and now heat and cool fully with electricity, one using air source heat pumps and the other using geothermal. Both homes feature other renewable technologies (e.g. solar and battery storage) PLUS get a bonus light lunch under the new solar canopies on Half Moon Hill. See one house or both.  The homeowners are excited to share with you, so please bring your questions. There will be two free sessions, one at 11am and one at 1pm. The address will be sent upon registration. Sponsored by For info and registration, click HERE.

Thursday, June 20 
The June Solstice 
In the Northern Hemisphere, the June solstice (aka summer solstice) occurs when the Sun travels along its northernmost path in the sky. This marks the astronomical start of summer in the northern half of the globe. (In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the opposite: the June solstice marks the astronomical start of winter when the Sun is at its lowest point in the sky.) The timing of the June solstice is not based on a specific calendar date or time; it all depends on when the Sun reaches its northernmost point from the celestial equator. Therefore, the solstice won’t always occur on the same day. Currently, it shifts between June 20, 21, and 22.  To learn more visit

Friday, June 21 
Summer Solstice Bike Ride
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm (rain date June 22);
Pedal Power Bike & Ski, 176 Great Road (Rt. 2A) Acton, MA 01720; Parking available across Great Road. 
Contact Tom Michelman:

Saturday, June 22nd
June Food Day- – Boston Area Gleaners 
4:30pm – 8:30pm
Stonefield Farm (91 Martin St., Acton)
Join Boston Area Gleaners for our 5th annual June Food Day celebration! Our biggest event of the season will feature farm fun for all ages: there will be hay rides, farm tours, a raffle, live music, and complimentary festive beverages. We will also have delicious food for purchase from food truck vendors!
All proceeds from this fundraising event will help to support our programs and further our mission to create an equitable and sustainable food system for our community. 
We hope to see you there!


Make Way for Duckl…Turtles!
In mid-May turtles get more active trying to find a mate and food. They often cross the road to see what’s on the other side. So be on the lookout and slow down when driving near wetlands and places you’ve seen turtles before.  Learn more.

RECORDING AVAILABLE:   “Garden for Climate Resilience”, presented by Trevor Smith of Weston Nurseries
Last month, the Acton Garden Club, and the sponsored the talk at Town Hall. 
The recording is available at ACT’s YouTube channel.  CLICK HERE for the link.

Spongy Moth Caterpillars, formerly known as Gypsy Moth Caterpillars, found in yard on Parker Street. 
Over one hundred years ago, spongy moth caterpillars were brought into the U.S. for research as a possible source for silk production. Escapees found a welcoming habitat, and masses of caterpillars have been plaguing our forests and landscapes on and off for over a century.  For more information about their  “Biology” and “Managing them” visit

Sign up to volunteer for Boston Area Gleaners  
Gleaning season is upon us and we need YOUR help! Be sure that you are signed up as a volunteer on our website – you will be automatically enrolled to receive weekly email updates when volunteer opportunities pop up. In the meantime, keep an eye on our volunteer opportunity list (or sign up for text message alerts – link below)
Sign up on our website and check out our FAQ to learn more!

Camp Acton is Open
Pope Road, Acton 
Fee is $25 per site reserved through he Recreation Department. 
Limited to 10 people per site.  Visit to learn more about Camp Acton. 
Please complete the registration form 48 business hours prior to desired reservation date.
Payments are due upon reservation confirmation 
Portable toilet on site. 
All users must follow social distancing, regulations and posted guidelines.  
Please complete and send camp Acton Permit application via email to or fax to 978-929-6333. Please allow up to two business days to process.

Garlic Mustard Season
It’s garlic mustard season again! Help manage this invasive plant across town by pulling on your own property.
Garlic mustard season runs from April 15th through June 14th.


Boston Area Gleaners Are Hiring!
In other news, if you have not already heard, the Gleaners are hiring! We’re looking to fill several roles on our team. Read on to learn more about our openings and how to apply. We are looking to fill several roles on our team! Click the names of the positions below to read the full job descriptions. To apply, send a resume and cover letter to

Now Hiring: Conservation Programs Intern!
MLTC is hiring a part-time intern with an interest in land conservation for the 2024-2025 academic year. The intern will work mostly from home, with occasional travel to MLTC events across Massachusetts. Responsibilities include providing research, technical assistance and logistical support for MLTC’s education programs, as well as maintaining our online resources such as our documents library, video library, service provider directory and grants database. Recent college graduates and graduate students are also welcome to apply. Please forward the following job description to anyone you think may be interested.

See you on the trails!!

Susan Mitchell-Hardt 
President, Acton Conservation Trust

P.S.  Welcome new “Events of Interest” subscribers!  As a non-profit organization focused on conserving land in Acton, we rely upon the support of our members.  Visit our ACT website, and click on “Join Us”