When Pierre S. du Pont purchased the property on which Longwood Gardens sits today he had one goal in mind—to save hundreds of trees that were earmarked for timber. This extraordinary act of land stewardship was a clear demonstration of Mr. du Pont’s deep commitment to preserving and improving the quality of our environmental resources.
Now, more than a century later, these founding principles have helped to position Longwood as a leader among public gardens in the areas of sustainability and land stewardship.
We apply these same principles in the management of our Perimeter and Natural Lands. These lands—which consist of meadows, forests, and wetlands—account for 700 of our 1,100 acres and provide a buffer between the Gardens and neighboring properties. Additionally, they offer wildlife habitat, provide air, water and soil resource protection, preserve open space, and frame or direct key views from within and outside the Gardens.
In order to maximize the ecological benefit of our Perimeter and Natural Lands we seek to manage them in support of Longwood’s greater sustainable goals—through the minimization of waste products, pesticides, energy/fuels, and other biological resources. This effort is steered largely by our Land Stewardship Strategic Plan which was adopted in 2010 and serves to guide the land use and stewardship principles, practices and decisions regarding our open resources.