Natick receives grant to pilot organic land care practices

Natick’s Land Facilities and Natural Resources Division received $10,000 from the University of Massachusetts Lowell’s Toxics Use Reduction Institute to pilot organic land-care practices on three municipal properties — the Bacon Free Library, the Memorial Elementary School soccer field, and the John J. Lane Park. The program, which is called the Healthier Lawns Project, will also support education on organic turf care for residents and local landscaping companies. The properties in the pilot project will undergo a complete technical review, in which microscopic soil nutrients, site conditions and playability factors are analyzed, and will begin their transition to organic management practices this fall. Natick’s team will then monitor the properties for two years, and will use the data to determine its ability to expand the practices to the additional 67 acres of school properties, playing fields, and other land managed by the town.

Jennifer Fenn Lefferts can be reached at