Dear Friends and Acton Conservation Trust Members:
The following news and events may be of interest:
Now – September 5
New Exhibit: Alive with Birds: William Brewster in Concord
Thursday to Sunday, 10 am to 4 PM, Walk ins welcome!
Concord Museum, 53 Cambridge Turnpike, Concord, MA
Visit this special exhibition to discover the beauty of birds. William Brewster (1851-1919) was Mass Audubon’s first President He dedicated over thirty years of his life to the study of birds in Concord at his property, which he called October Farm. Drawn to Concord for its natural beauty and abundant bird life, Brewster made October Farm his experimental field laboratory and documented its wildlife for scientific study and public enlightenment. In 2019, Mass Audubon received a 143 acre parcel of land which was once part of October Farm, which has been renamed Brewster’s Woods Wildlife Sanctuary. For more information visit their website.
Members free; Adults $15, Seniors $12, Children (6 to 17) $8
Sunday May 1-31
No Mow May – (To Prevent Habitat Loss) sponsored for Town of Lincoln by Lincoln Land Conservation Trust
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.
Thursday, May 5
Your Landscape Matters: Changing the Conservation Paradigm Hosted by Metrowest Climate Solutions
Loss of biodiversity and climate change are the pre-eminent challenges of our era and can seem like overwhelming problems. Yet, each of us can help address these crises right at home, especially by stewarding our gardens as dynamic living systems. Claudia Thompson will take us on a “tour” of her urban garden in Cambridge to illustrate how she created a landscape rich with habitat— supporting wildlife, birds, and pollinators— where more than 80 species of birds have visited or nested in this relatively small parcel of land. With her inspirational story as a case study, we then look at tangible steps that all of us can take in our gardens and landscapes to improve the ecological health of our communities. Come learn about how to be part of the solution— emphasizing native plants, embracing ecological processes, and making your garden a place full of life.
To Register: https://uuma.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_k6bFIeCeRcq4koJf9Eo8_g
Thursday, May 5
Middlesex West Chamber of Commerce Awards Gala and Fundraising Banquet
Westford Regency Hotel – under the tent.
Please join Executive Director, Debra Strick – Funds support high school scholarships. The Cinco de Mayo celebration starts at a 5:30 with raffle and auction items. Sign up HERE.
Tom Tidman, Acton’s Natural Resources Director for 35 years, will be presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award! Tickets on sale through May 2; Seats are $80/person individually and $600 per table of eight
For more information visit [mwcoc.com] or call 978-253-0010; or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, May 5
Online Explore Farming Workshop.
Free and open to all. If you are at the very beginning of exploring farm business ownership, Explore Farming is for you. In this free workshop you will: Learn about New Entry Sustainable Farming Project’s courses and services; Identify resources you have and resources you’ll need for your farm business; Identify next steps to get started with your new farm business; Learn about the variety of roles in the food system and opportunities to get involved; Hear the perspective from a local farmer about getting started in agriculture. Details and registration here.
Friday, May 6
Behind the Scenes Tour at Stonefield Farm-Program Full
Stonefield Farm, Acton
Join Usha Thakrar, Executive Director of the Boston Area Gleaners and Christa Collins, SVT Director of Land Protection to learn about how Acton’s Stonefield Farm was protected and what its future holds. The farm serves as BAG’s hub for storing and packing crops for hunger relief, and Usha will describe how this non-profit addresses food insecurity, on-farm food waste, and local farm sustainability through a variety of programs. Co-sponsored by the Boston Area Gleaners. Register at https://www.svtweb.org/node/10740/register
Saturday, May 7
Honey Bee Education Days at State Apiaries
In-Person – UMass, Amherst or Essex North Shore Agricultural land Technical School, Danvers, MA
Join the Bee Team from MDAR’s Apiary Program to get a tour of live working honey bee colonies, hands-on demonstrations of colony management techniques, and exposure to the latest knowledge on how to best sustain honey bee health in the Commonwealth. 2 locations. Details here.
Monday and Tuesday, May 9-10
Town of Boxborough Spring Town Meeting – Help Save 21 acres of forest on Sargent Road in Boxborough!
Blanchard Memorial School, Boxborough
The Boxborough Conservation Trust urges Boxborough residents to attend both nights of Town Meeting and to Vote YES on Warrant Article 23 on Tuesday, 2/3 vote required. Attend on Monday to make sure Article 23 is discussed on May 10 towards the beginning of the night – around 7:45 PM. For more information visit bctrust.org.
Thursday, May 12
Electrifying Our Way to Net Zero
Virtual Event A key step to counter global warming is to change how we heat and cool our buildings. It is a big step . . . but it can be done! Join Acton Sustainability Director Andrea Becerra to celebrate two great examples of the new electrification movement—the fossil fuel free North Acton Fire Station (already open) and the amazing triple net zero new Douglas/Gates School Project (opening this summer). Kate Crosby, Energy Manager of the Acton-Boxborough Regional School District, will share an exciting Town “electrification roadmap” for retrofitting existing municipal buildings. Finally, for those of us who would like to form a plan to tackle our private homes and businesses, Mike Simons of Abode Energy, will share ideas for homeowners, landlords, and businesses.To register for this event, click HERE. This event is sponsored by EnergizeActon.org, a joint effort of the Acton Climate Coalition and the Town of Acton to help Acton residents address climate change by reducing their carbon footprints.
Saturday, May 14
Codman Farm in Lincoln, 58 Codman Road
Join us for the fifth and final class of the Healthy Soils Series. At the Planting Carbon workshop, we’ll be focused on how soil can pull and store carbon from the atmosphere. Using the garden as a model for carbon storage, we’ll learn about deeply rooted perennial shrubs, conservation tillage, and composting. We’ll also have some fun, finale happenings for this session. Sign up here, or visit our website.
May 17, 2022
Spring Bird Walk at NARA Park, Acton, MA
NARA Park, Acton, MA
The birds are back in town! Grab your binoculars and join birder Al Sgroi for a few hours of bird watching and identifying at NARA Park. You can register by clicking Spring Bird Walk, or by going to our website: www.ActonConservationTrust.org.
Thursday, May 19
All Access Acton Arboretum
Cathy Hatfield, President, Friends of the Acton Arboretum will take you for an easy walk around the Acton Arboretum. These trails were designed to minimize barriers to navigation. The arboretum has both natural and cultivated gardens. In May, the lilacs will be in bloom! Note: Parking is limited so participants will be asked to carpool from the Sudbury Senior Center (Fairbank Rd. in Sudbury.) Co-sponsored by the Sudbury Senior Center. The Wildflower Trail Loop is 0.5 mi long, and is on solid surface trails. Trails surfaces consist of pavement, stone dust, and wooden boardwalks. Most inclines are less than 5%, but there is one section that is 8%. There are some mild irregularities in the asphalt trail due to freezing and thawing. There are benches to stop and rest every 200’. Sponsored by Sudbury Valley Trustees and Sudbury Senior Center. Register here.
Saturday, May 21
Acton Garden Club Plant Sale and Raffle
9-1 PM, Rain or Shine
Red House – Acton Center, 468 Main Street on Route 27
The plant sale is the major fundraiser of the Acton Garden Club. The proceeds benefit the many public gardens and plantings maintained by the Club within the Acton community. In addition the funds are used for the annual high school scholarship, the educational grant program and many other community service projects. Visit actongardenclub.org to learn more about Jumping Worms and how they deal with the issue.
CONGRATULATIONS TO SVT/CLCT, TOWN OF CONCORD, ON ACQUIRING THE ASSABET RIVER BLUFF PROPERTY, 7 acres along
the Assabet River and the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail, including a two-family home at 406 Old Marlboro Road.
At May 1 Annual Town Meeting Concord voters overwhelmingly approved the use of Community Preservation Act funds to purchase the property!!!
SVT and the Concord Land Conservation Trust (CLCT) agreed to raise additional funds from private individuals to help with the open space portion of the purchase. They met their private fundraising goal prior to Town Meeting vote. Now the Concord Open Land Foundation will purchase 6 acres of the property for open space, and the Concord Housing Development Corporation will purchase 1 acre for affordable housing. Ultimately the Town will own the open space portion, once federal grant funding is awarded. For more information, visit svtweb.org/land-protection/projects/assabet-river-bluff-concord
CONGRATULATIONS TO CUCURBIT FARM on the birth of their first calf ever born at the farm – on April 17!!!!
To see some great photos, visit https://www.instagram.com/cucurbitfarm
Boston Area Gleaners (BAG) is Rock Picking and Grocery Box Packing!
Join volunteers in the field to pick rocks or in BAG’s greenhouse on Wednesday, TBD to pack grocery boxes for local pantries and low-income housing facilities. Sign up to volunteer at https://www.bagetc.org/gleanlist.php
Monday, May 9
9 am to noon
Stonefield Farm, Acton, MA
Packing mixed produce boxes
Stonefield Farm, Acton, MA
Wednesday, May 11
Packing grocery boxes
9-12 PM OR 1-4 PM
Stonefield Farm, Martin Street, Acton, MA
Sign up to volunteer at https://www.bagetc.org/gleanlist.php
Goat Hikes – Good Pickin’ Farm
5 Gould Road, Westford
Goat Hikes. $65/group up to 8 people. Informative nature hike led by an ecologist, focusing on different flora or fauna of the area that is seasonal. Have fun while the goats walk and run along with you and enjoy their silly antics! For more information call 425-306-7203 or email email@example.com
April Through May
Join Central Mass. Goat Rental for a Walk with Goats
48 West Acres Drive, Lunenberg
Take to the trails with friendly farm animals at your side. Anywhere from 6 to 16 goats will go on the hikes. Goats have a natural instinct to follow the leader, which makes them perfect hiking companions. The hike is relatively easy, lasting about an hour. Masks and social distance are required and group size is limited due to Covid-19. Each hike costs $35 per adult, $10 per child (under the age of 15 years old), and children ages 5 years and under are free. To book a hike, visit www.centralmagoatrental.com and choose the date of your hike.
Hiking with Dogs – The Trustees Did you and your family get a pandemic puppy? Are you and your older dog a little tired of the same old walking routes? Let our dog-friendly properties give you a burst of inspiration to get some fresh air for you and your four-footed companion. These 7 places might be just the thing this spring. Click here for Dog Friendly Hikes
Spring Ahead of Jumping Worms –Jumping worms (aka snake worms, crazy worms) are widespread and spreading aggressively throughout the Northeast. These invasive earthworms are noticeably larger than the established earthworms and thrash violently when disturbed. Damage caused by jumping worms includes devouring leaf litter that regenerates soil and over-aerating the soil, causing nutrients to each out, roots to loosen, and soil to erode. Read what Native Plant Trust is doing and a what you can do to stop their spread. What Native Plant Trust is doing to prevent the spread of jumping worms: All wood chips and compost used at Garden in the Woods are produced on site. We use new plastic pots for most of the plants we sell. We clean and sanitize any reused pots. Native Plant Trust, nativeplantrust.org for more information.
Garlic Mustard Season!
Neighborhood Pull Season: Now through- May 31.
Venture out and pull Garlic Mustard on your own! Need some exercise this weekend? It’s the start of garlic mustard season! Plants are up and easy to spot right now. Pull the plant up by the root. Tear it apart and shake soil out of the roots. From https://concordma.gov/778/Garlic-Mustard-Alliaria-Petiolata: Remove the plant with its entire root system or new plants may sprout from root fragments. Take care not spread any plants that have gone to seed. Remove completely from the site and dispose of in garbage bags. Foliar spray is not recommended as it can be harmful to the surrounding flora and fauna. Please check with Bettina Abe, firstname.lastname@example.org, about pulling Garlic Mustard at the Acton Arboretum.
Support Acton Conservation Trust while you make purchases on AmazonSmile! ACT will receive a small payment, and these add up! From your desktop or laptop computer, AmazonSmile is available at at smile.amazon.com on your Web browser. Bookmark it for easy use! AmazonSmile is available from your mobile phone as well. To activate AmazonSmile in the Amazon Shopping app, simply tap on “AmazonSmile” within the Programs & Features menu or Settings and follow the on-screen instructions.
President, Acton Conservation Trust
P.S. Welcome new “Events of Interest” subscribers! As a nonprofit organization focused on conserving land in Acton, we rely upon the the support of our members. Visit our ACT website, and click on “Join Us”!