Summer season with the Land Trust

Kate planting native shrubs at Bay House in Wright Woods.


The Land Stewardship Intern for 2020, Kate Regan-Loomis, reflects on her time working for the Land Trust:

This past summer, I had the amazing opportunity to be the Concord Land Conservation Trust’s Land Stewardship Intern. I spent my days on the beautiful Concord landscape, working to care for the Land Trust’s properties. Much of this work included pulling invasive species, aquatic and terrestrial, but it also included working on the trails to make sure that the land could be enjoyed by all. As the Covid19 pandemic has progressed, I’ve witnessed firsthand the value of having access to nature locally in our town. As strange as our own world may be right now, the natural world around us continues. The deer carefully glide through the trees, owls swoop and call to each other, and painted turtles bask on logs in the Sudbury River. It’s comforting to be reminded that the earth spins on.

Some of the invasive plants that volunteers and I have been removing include garlic mustard, Asian bittersweet, water chestnuts, Japanese barberry, and buckthorn. So many of these plants, and more, are easy to learn to identify and remove or cut back. For many of the environmentally-minded people I know, the questions they think about have a massive scope. Climate change, global pollution, deforestation, and more. But my work this summer allowed me to narrow my focus onto what was right in front of me, literally. Picking up litter or pulling a noxious plant might not seem as important as solving global problems, but the impact you can make is real. Getting our hands dirty, literally, is the best way to make a tangible difference.

This was such a wonderful experience that I will never forget. Local conservation is incredible work, and the citizens of Concord are so clearly invested in the protection of their local environment. My favorite parts of my days were when people walking on trails or kayaking by asked me what I was doing and how they could help, or thanked me. Their interest and investment in the ecosystem and the Land Trust was so inspiring, and I am so happy to have been able to take part in such meaningful work this summer. I learned so much about the native Massachusetts ecosystems and how we can work to balance conservation and recreation in ways that benefit both the environment and the people living in it.

Kate working with AMC to build a boardwalk into Newbury Field.
Marking trails at October Farm Riverfront.
View allless