Dozens of building lots reduced to 2, working farmland preserved
MIDDLEBURG, Va., Oct. 20, 2022 – The Land Trust of Virginia (LTV) is pleased to announce their first conservation easement in Caroline County thanks to the generosity of landowner Bernice Rowe. This 419-acre property is located in Milford, Va. and will continue to operate as a working farm that has been operated by the family since the 1960’s.
“I am very excited about having my family farm protected by this easement. This is my contribution to the land that my father farmed and loved and that my family lives on. This marks my stewardship of the land,” said Rowe. “Too much wonderful farmland disappears yearly from development and will never return to agriculture, and I wanted my property to avoid this fate. Caroline is still a very rural county, but just by its physical location between Richmond and Fredericksburg, growth and development will come at some point, and I wanted Wayland Farm to avoid this fate. From now on, it is protected for all who live on the land to enjoy the change of seasons and crop rotations and watch the woodlands and wildlife exist in harmony.”
Rowe’s property contains about 379 acres of “Prime Farmland Soils” or “Farmland Soils of Statewide Importance” and currently produces corn, soy, wheat, and barley. Her farming operation qualified her for assistance from LTV’s Malcom Forbes Baldwin Fund, a donor restricted fund established to help with costs associated with completing a conservation easement on properties currently in agricultural use. Last year, the fund originally used for properties in Loudoun County—where Malcolm lived—was expanded to be used statewide.
Additional natural resources protected include preservation of scenic open spaces, with about a mile of frontage on Sparta Road and 0.72 miles of frontage on Beverly Run Road. The property also contains 18.3 acres of wetlands and 122 acres of forest cover.
“Rowe completed this easement on her property for all the right reasons,” said LTV Executive Director, Sally Price. “Her love of this working land and desire to honor her father who purchased it and began their farming operation nearly 60 years ago will ensure it remains productive, growing food for fellow Virginians for future generations. We are honored to work with her and bring her conservation goals to reality.”
The Rowe easement is the 221st easement completed by the Land Trust of Virginia. For more information about their work, please visit http://www.landtrustva.org.
About the Land Trust of Virginia
The Land Trust of Virginia is a nonprofit organization that partners with private landowners who voluntarily protect and preserve properties with significant historic, scenic, or ecological value. LTV has worked with 221 families, conserving a total of 26,564 acres in 25 counties in Virginia. While LTV charges landowners for their services, the fees charged only cover about 28% of LTV’s actual costs so fundraising is essential to our mission.