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Agricultural Stewardship AssociationAgricultural Stewardship Association

Your Impact

Conservation Stories

Since its inception in 1990, ASA has helped landowners protect a variety of working lands throughout Washington and Rensselaer counties.
Underwood Property

40 ACRES CONSERVED IN TOWN OF HEBRON

John and Peg Underwood, working together with ASA and the Battenkill Conservancy, protected their productive forested property on a tributary of the Battenkill River, thus assuring that it will remain working land for generations to come.

Creating a New Partnership for Forested Property on Battenkill Tributary

John and Peg Underwood plan ahead and they get things done. Twenty-five years of work on their 40 wooded acres has produced a house, pond, forestry management plan, sugar shack, and sawmill. Their land is productive and they’d like to see it stay that way.

The biggest obstacle to conservation was the size of their property. Most land trusts in the region give priority to parcels of 100 acres or more due to the cost of establishing and maintaining easements. This was discouraging, but the Underwoods are not ones to “take no for an answer.” Being the parents, and occasional unpaid helpers, of a hydro-geologist, they knew about watershed protection and they brought the idea to the Battenkill Conservancy.

The Battenkill Conservancy holds no easements of its own but reached out to ASA and a new partnership was born. The Conservancy agreed to help ASA cover some of the costs associated with establishing an easement and the Underwoods, in addition to donating an easement, also made a contribution to help with its long-term stewardship and defense.

The Underwoods, working together with ASA and the Battenkill Conservancy, achieved their goal of conserving their working land for generations to come. In addition, John has run the numbers and sees this project as a financially sound investment. Planning and determination really can pay off.

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