Help to Protect “John’s Field”!

HCT has been working behind the scenes for the past two years on a project that would permanently protect a significant 10-acre parcel of land on Slough Road, known as John‘s Field.  This project is an outstanding conservation opportunity, and here’s why:

  • Connectivity!  Protecting land that links to other conserved land is critical for both wildlife habitat and outdoor recreation.  John’s Field is our best chance to create a greenway from Town center to the network of conservation lands around Great Elms.
  • Farmland and local food! John’s Field contains “prime” farmland soils and is cultivated by a local farmer.  Protecting land with prime agricultural soils is a goal of the Massachusetts’ Local Food Action Plan, and supports Harvard’s agricultural economy.
  • Iconic landscape!  John’s Field is about a mile from Town center at the highpoint of Slough Road.  All those who drive, bike, or walk this stretch of Slough Road experience its scenic beauty and openness.  It is places like this that define Harvard and the Nashoba region.

The cost of the John’s Field project is $350,000.  Thanks to funds available from HCT’s Muller Conservation Collaborative we needed to raise only half this amount; and thanks to several generous donations from neighbors, friends, and a Fields Pond Foundation grant we currently have $38,000 left to raise, and a September 21st deadline!  Please help us successfully complete this project by making your contribution today.  Give online through the Donation Page on this website, or by mailing a check to: Harvard Conservation Trust | P.O. Box 31 | Harvard, MA 01451.  Please write “Muller Conservation Collaborative” on your check or online gift so we can match your donation dollar-for-dollar.

Plein Air Art Reception

Saturday July 7th, 3:00-5:00 pm.

Harvard Cultural Collaborative, 7 Fairbanks Street, Harvard, MA

This exhibit focuses on plein air art resulting from a series of 4 workshop sessions, produced by multiple artists who visited different Harvard sites each week.  We show the process, the freedom to test, experiment and play with ideas, and the freedom to be creative. On display will be studies, sketches, and value paintings, as well as any finished pieces ready by the opening.

Artists at the reception will be available to discuss the process, and to demonstrate use of materials. Learn about how artists select their site to paint. What is it that they look for?

Link to Harvard Press article with the story behind this event …

Photo by: Anne Gillespie

Harvard Environmental Forum: Climate Risk & Resiliency

Harvard Town Hall | Thursday May 31,  7-9pm

Come hear from local committees, boards, organizations, and others working to protect and sustain our natural and municipal resources.  This year’s forum will focus on climate risks and resiliency.  Please come join the conversation and learn how you can get involved.

Tree for All 2018

HCT Trustees and Associates will distribute seedlings at the Transfer Station Saturday, April 28, from 8:00 am to noon, and on the Common across from the General Store Sunday, April 29, from 9:30am — noon. The seedlings are a Harvard Conservation Trust membership benefit and are also available to non-members for $5.00 each while supplies last. Please stop by the Transfer Station or Town Center to let us say thank you for your support!


Spring Walk Linking Three Great Conservation Properties

Harvard Conservation Commission’s Land Stewardship Subcommittee is leading a hike on Sunday, April 8, meeting at 1:30 pm at the parking lot for Village Nursery School on Poor Farm Road in Harvard.

From our start, the full route includes three properties. We begin with a loop on the Harvard Conservation Trust’s scenic Ohlin Property down to the banks of Bowers Brook. We next swing through Harvard’s Town Forest and then cross over Rt. 2 on Poor Farm Road to traverse the Kaufmann land, taking in its striking cliffs. Finally, for the energetic, there’s an additional extension following the Kaufmann Trail to South Shaker Rd (dotted line on the map), and back.

Enjoy our public land and a great hike nearby. Moderate pace; about 3 hours on uneven terrain for full route. Drizzle/flurries ok; rain or much snow (ground or air) cancels. Well-controlled dogs OK. Personal tick protection suggested.

Contact Jim Adelson at for more information.


Think Big … Think Green … Think Positive! And join us for 2017 Annual Meeting

Thursday, November 16th, at the Harvard Historical Society meeting house, at 215 Still River Road, from 7:00 to 9:00 pm – Free and Open to the Public!

The evening will feature a presentation by Jim Levitt from the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, and co-author of a newly released report, Wildlands and Woodlands, Farmlands and Communities: Broadening the Vision for New England, from the Harvard [University] Forest.

Jim Levitt is the manager of land conservation programs in the Department of Planning and Urban Form at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, and director of the Program on Conservation Innovation at the Harvard Forest, Harvard University, in Petersham, Massachusetts.  What is the Wildlands and Woodlands Vision?  Imagine …

“Forests blanket the region, even within thickly settled areas, but vary in striking ways to create distinctive landscapes, provide a rich array of habitats, and support a range of human experiences and valuable resources.  Farmlands provide healthy local food, diversify the region’s landscape, and enhance scenic beauty, plant and wildlife habitat, and biodiversity.  Robust rural economies enable the individuals and families who produce our local wood and food to share in the region’s prosperity.  In more densely populated areas, shade trees, urban gardens, and forested parks and greenways yield irreplaceable community and health benefits and help moderate the effects of climate change.  Forestland and open space protected in perpetuity mitigate climate change, help communities contend with extreme weather events, provide clean drinking water, and maintain healthy air quality.  Across the region, well-managed forests and farmlands, expansive wildlands, smart growth, and rural economic development are embraced as compatible, achievable, and mutually reinforcing.”

The presentation will be followed by light refreshments, including homemade gingerbread, fresh apple cider, and good cheer. Bring a friend!

Botany Walk at Horse Meadows Knoll

Sunday, October 1

10:00 am – 11:30 am

Register at or call 978-443-5588 x 123

Free for members of HCT & SVT, $10 public

 Led by Ted Elliman, author of “Wildflowers in New England” and botanist at the New England Wildflower Society, and Christa Collins, SVT Director of Land Protection

Sudbury Valley Trustees (SVT) and the Harvard Conservation Trust (HCT) have embarked on a joint venture to preserve 45 ecologically important acres on Sherry Road in Harvard. The property boasts a beautiful beech forest, a historic reservoir, and wetlands, and it is home to several endangered species.

Guided Beaver Walk @ Horse Meadows Knoll

Date and Time: September 12, 2017 6:30pm to 7:45pm

Location: Horse Meadows Knoll, Sherry Road, Harvard

Walk Leader: Dan Stimson, SVT Assistant Director of Stewardship

Price: $10 (free for SVT & HCT members)

Join SVT Assistant Director of Stewardship, Dan Stimson, on a guided walk to Horse Meadows Reservoir, home to a beaver lodge, to learn about the history of beavers in our region, their adaptations that make them successful, and how their impact on the landscape benefits many other wildlife species.  Register online at:

What is HCT all about? A picture’s worth a thousand words …

Moonrise over Bare Hill Pond

Submitted by Robin Right