Preserving History at Stevens-Coolidge Place in No. Andover, MA


Last month, the Stevens-Coolidge Place in No. Andover, MA had eleven trees treated for Winter Moth pro bono with donated labor and materials from Arborjet and Downer Brothers Landscaping, Inc. The Trustees of Reservations estate has also treated their historic ash tree to protect it from Emerald Ash Borer in an effort to preserve the historic landscape for generations to come.

20th-Century Country Elegance

The Stevens-Coolidge Place is a signature example of an estate designed in “The Country Place” style. Drawing inspiration from European garden design in order to transform their rural land holdings into summer retreats. Helen Stevens, member of one of the founding families of North Andover, inherited the property her family had farmed for generations. After her marriage to John Gardner Coolidge (nephew of Isabella Stewart Gardner) the property became their summer home.

The Historic Gardens

Around 1914, Helen and John began the decades-long transformation of the farm into an elegant agricultural estate. Strongly influenced by French design themes, they added the walled rose garden, greenhouse, serpentine brick wall and French vegetable garden that exist today. In 1962 Helen Stevens Coolidge died and bequeathed Ashdale Farm to The Trustees of Reservations. It was renamed The Stevens-Coolidge Place in to honor Helen and her husband. Additional land was acquired in later decades, and restoration efforts by The Trustees have been ongoing.

Treating for Winter Moth

Kevin Block, Superintendent of Andover/North Andover Management Unit of The Trustees of Reservations spoke with Arborjet social about the recent treatments at Stevens-Coolidge Place. “Winter Moth here has been incredibly bad for the last two years. It has been so egregious that over time, the plants started to show signs of stress which could eventually lead to death. At risk historic trees include a couple of ornamental apple trees, some huge maples and several other trees that have been on the property for 50-100 years. Winter moth eats everything here and is decimating the plants and trees. It was nice to get them treated.”

Prepared for Emerald Ash Borer

Mr. Block also commented on the property’s enormous ash, which had previously received preventative treatment for Emerald Ash Borer with TREE-äge® Insecticide. “We treated our giant ash for EAB after it was found down the road in North Andover a year and half ago. We have been working with DCR and the Forest Service to examine our other Trustees of Reservations properties in the area and haven’t found the beetle here yet. We treated that ash due to its historic value but also because it’s a special tree to the property that plays a major part in the landscape. After seeing what Emerald Ash Borer could do, we wanted to play it safe.”

Do you have questions about Winter Moth or Emerald Ash Borer? Contact us!

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