IHP Foundation - USA
As you enter the IHP foundation farm and cross past the dry-stacked stone walls, you see the Heirloom Grove (a zone two area) on your right. The Heirloom Grove consists of transplanted and grafted species of fruiting trees and shrubs that have been taken from other properties under development. Many of these trees would have been cut down after decades of growth on old farms and homesteads.
East and west of the arena are trellised hillsides. The east-facing slope creates an opportunity for cool morning moisture and sun exposure for vine crops. The intention of these trellises is for conserving heirloom cultivars of grapes. Modern varieties will also be displayed with the emphasis being for cultivars from Cornell University and the University of Minnesota. Both of these institutions have developed resilient grapes for production. Virginia has a large vineyard industry and a long history of grape production.
The IHP Foundation Conservation Orchard is an extension of the Heirloom Grove as it transitions into the indigenous meadow below. This space is filled with insectary islands and pollinator plants. It focuses more on the habitat and beauty of an expansive and free-flowing structure of fruiting trees and shrubs working with nature's many ecological services.
As we travel east into the property we cross into a more spacious and grassy Indigenous Meadow environment. Native “savannah” canopy trees and understory plants fill the centre of the meadow of tall grasses. Various species of bunch grasses and prairie perennials fill this space. In the far east point, dense grasses are planted for protection and habitat of nesting birds. The perimeter of this indigenous meadow is mowed as pasture. This helps keep predators and mammals at a distance from the protected areas.
Finally, in this southern section, we have an exclusively protected area for songbirds and pollinator insects. Tall shrubs screen the road and pasture from this area as trees and perennials create a cool and protected sanctuary of habitat. Visitors enter the loop path from the hidden east entrance of the paddock access fence. Broad-leaved plants, tall grasses, shrubs and columnar trees create a natural bowl of seclusion. From this area, generations of life emerge and find protection in extreme weather.
Climate: Humid Subtropical
Annual Precipitation: 43 inches
Function: Multifunctional farm for
therapy of Children with Autism
Size: 16 acres