Rossview Farm Conservation Completed (NH)

Concord, New Hampshire, 2/15/2007: The Trust for Public Land (TPL), The City of Concord, the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP), and the New Hampshire Division of Forests and Lands announced today that the state has acquired a conservation easement on 550 acres of the 670-acre Rossview Farm in Concord. The easement ensures that the land will remain as working forest land, and will never be developed.

The purchase was made possible through a $1.97 million U.S. Forest Service Forest Legacy Program (FLP) grant, administered by the New Hampshire Division of Forests and Lands. The project was recommended for funding in the FY 2005 President’s budget and then approved by Congress thanks to the leadership of U.S. Senator Judd Gregg and the support of New Hampshire’s congressional delegation. The federal dollars were matched by $300,000 from LCHIP, $300,000 from the City of Concord’s conservation fund, and over $100,000 from private donations.

U.S. Senator Judd Gregg said, “I want to thank all those who made possible the successful completion of this project. NH has many special places and Rossview farm is unquestionably one of them. The tremendous growth we have experienced in recent years is impacting not only our state’s physical beauty but the special qualities that have made NH such a great place to live. Fortunately, the people in Concord understand the importance of acting now to preserve our unique heritage. Together with the TPL, this community has demonstrated real leadership in meeting this critical responsibility by insuring that Rossview Farm will continue to be a key piece of the cultural and environmental fabric of NH. I was pleased to lend my support to this project and want to again thank all, especially the Ross family, for their efforts.”

Concord Mayor Michael L. Donovan said, “What a community chooses to save is what a community chooses to say about itself. What the City of Concord says is that we value our natural resources and farmlands and that we will work with our residents, like the Ross family, to protect those resources for our residents of today and our future generations.”

The owner of the land, Wayne Ross, added, “Ruth and I are proud of this accomplishment. It was a long and challenging journey for our family. We are thrilled that Rossview Farm will be protected from development. Our forest will forever provide wildlife habitat, firewood and timber for homes and passive recreation for the public. Production from our cropland will continue to provide those sweet strawberries. For all the people who worked together to make this come to fruition, we thank you. We are pleased for our children, our City and our State.”

Rossview Farm draws many loyal local and area visitors to its scenic beauty and for the experience of buying fresh food and forest products from the farm, including strawberries, blueberries, pumpkins, Christmas trees, wreaths, maple syrup, and firewood. The Ross family has been farming this land for over 50 years, and now their son, Donny will have the opportunity to continue the family farming tradition that could have ended if the farm were not conserved.

The completed conservation easement over 550 acres of this property, added to close to 70 acres of fields previously conserved, protects a critical link in a roughly 2,000-acre swath of conservation land which protects Concord’s drinking water supply. The property also has a network of cross-country skiing and hiking trails, a variety of forest habitats and spectacular views.

TPL negotiated the sale of the easement and helped with the effort to apply for FLP funding. Rodger Krussman, Senior Project Manager for TPL, said, “In this era of intense development pressure on farmland, we’re proud of this accomplishment which will help preserve the agricultural heritage and character of Concord. We are prouder, still, of the collaborations that made it possible.”

The Forest Legacy easement will enhance the protections of an existing agricultural easement over the farm land, perhaps best known for its production of pick-your-own strawberries. Under the new easement, the working forestland will be managed for timber production, habitat protection and for passive recreational use by the public. The newly-protected land is adjacent to large blocks of conservation land, including City of Concord drinking water supply land and Sunnycrest Orchard.

“This project was only possible because of the commitment of Ross family to the project and hard work and support of many others including TPL, LCHIP, the forest Service and the City of Concord. We are grateful to be able to play a role is helping to protect these properties that define our communities across the state” said Philip Bryce, Director of the New Hampshire Division of Forests and Lands.

LCHIP’s Executive Director Rachel Rouillard said, “Rossview Farm is a reminder of the important role agriculture has played and continues to play in New Hampshire’s landscape and cultural heritage. Rossview is unique in that it is a well-diversified, working farm that provides a wealth of benefits to Concord area residents. It is important for the state to support agricultural enterprises to ensure that they remain a vibrant part of our communities.”

The Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national nonprofit organization conserving land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens, and natural areas, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Since its founding in 1972, TPL has helped protect more than 2.1 million acres of land in 45 states, including over 200,000 acres in New Hampshire. TPL depends on the support and generosity of individuals, foundations, and businesses to achieve our land for people mission. For more information, please contact TPL’s Concord office at (603) 224-0103 or visit