Tennessee warbler

Cliff’s Harbingers of Spring

American robins are often called “harbingers of spring” as they start their annual mating rituals in our yards, near our schools, grocery stores and offices.  They certainly like the open habitats we have created for our busy lives. As they sing in the morning and fly with nesting materials, for many people they are a welcome sign warm weather is coming. Continue reading

Cliff Chapman

Executive Director

As CILTI’s Executive Director, Cliff keeps CILTI’s focus on good science and stewardship. He’s mindful that the natural places you love took thousands of years to evolve and could be destroyed in a single day, and that knowledge drives his dedication to their protection.
Indiana bat

Holladay Properties donates more land near AmeriPlex

Indiana bat population could soar on land near Indianapolis International Airport

INDIANAPOLIS (May 3, 2022) – Holladay Properties has donated an additional seven acres within its AmeriPlex complex to the Central Indiana Land Trust Inc. (CILTI). Valued at $570,000, the latest gift means the commercial real estate firm has gifted a total of 57 acres in southwest Marion County to CILTI to enhance and maintain as a nature preserve.

Holladay made its first land gift in the area to CILTI in 2013, allowing the nonprofit land trust to protect and expand habitat for the endangered Indiana bat. Over the years, CILTI and many volunteers have planted trees and removed invasive plants in the partially wooded property to restore it as a nature preserve.

“This latest gift allows us to further preserve an area that serves as the summer home for one of the state’s largest populations of our region’s most endangered species, the Indiana bat,” said CILTI Executive Director Cliff Chapman. “It’s a great example of how protected land in what we call core conservation areas helps to bolster Indiana’s incredible biodiversity.”

Chapman added, “Holladay has a long history of being attentive to environmental impact. For example, AmeriPlex Indianapolis was the first Indiana business park recognized as a certified ‘Wildlife Friendly Habitat’ by the Indiana Wildlife Federation.”

Called the Wallace F. Holladay Preserve at AmeriPlex after the founder of Holladay Properties, the land is open to the public and accessible via Flynn Road.

About Holladay Properties
Holladay is a full service commercial real estate firm. A fully-integrated, full-scale land development, design/build, and property management firm, Holladay has developed over 20 million square feet of commercial space and actively manages over 15.5 million square feet of office, industrial, retail, multi-family, hotel, and healthcare space – and its medical office management portfolio is one of the largest in the country. The firm has more than 250 employees in a variety of specialties working from about 25 offices throughout the eastern half of the U.S.

Jen Schmits Thomas

Media Relations

An award-winning communicator and recognized leader in Central Indiana’s public relations community, Jen helps us tell our story in the media. She is the founder of JTPR, which she and her husband John Thomas own together.
Trillium now flourishes at Meltzer Woods

Meltzer Woods: A Wintercreeper Success Story

In less than ten years, Meltzer Woods‘ wintercreeper problem has come under control.

What is wintercreeper? If you spend any time in a residential area, you will see this evergreen vine in gardens and/or climbing trees. For years, nurseries sold it as a groundcover, like English ivy. Continue reading

Jamison Hutchins

Stewardship Director

Jamison leads our stewardship team in caring for the land that is so important to you. He brings not only a love of nature, but an ability to create meaningful partnerships that advance crucial work.
Stephanie touring a cave

A Day in the Life with our Land Protection Manager

Stephanie Paine Crossin, our land protection manager, spends her days working to bring more acres under protection. Her work takes her from the quiet of her workspace to the buzz of a conference room table to the splendor of the great outdoors. Continue reading

Shawndra Miller

Communications Manager

Shawndra is in charge of sharing our story and connecting you to our work. Through our print and online materials, she hopes to inspire your participation in protecting special places for future generations.
Scarlet tanager photo by Emily Wood

Hiking Fred and Dorothy Meyer Nature Preserve

Guest post by Emily Wood, executive director of Indiana Wildlife Federation

I was tempted to wholly undersell the Fred and Dorothy Meyer Nature Preserve in this post in order to keep it my little secret. I have been visiting this property regularly since I discovered that it was a quick ten minute drive from my house. Every season here offers something to see, smell or hear—and always packs one heck of a workout with its trail plunging steeply into a forested valley. Continue reading

Emily Wood

Guest Blogger

Emily Wood is a Central Indiana Land Trust member living on the southwest side of Indianapolis. She has a degree in Wildlife Biology from Ball State University and currently serves as the executive director for the Indiana Wildlife Federation. Emily is an avid angler, hiker, photographer and conservation advocate.
Phlox, by Dick Miller

The (Botanical) Roots of Women’s Literary Tradition

Did you know that Emily Dickinson was not only a poet, but a collector of plants? Like many upper-class white women of her era, she created an herbarium—a collection of plants from her home territory around Amherst, Massachusetts. Continue reading

Shawndra Miller

Communications Manager

Shawndra is in charge of sharing our story and connecting you to our work. Through our print and online materials, she hopes to inspire your participation in protecting special places for future generations.

The Feminine Face of Nature

For Women’s History Month, we’re celebrating women who’ve opened up new ways of connecting with or advocating for nature. Writers, activists, educators, scientists: These trailblazers bring something new to the conversation about the natural world. Continue reading

Shawndra Miller

Communications Manager

Shawndra is in charge of sharing our story and connecting you to our work. Through our print and online materials, she hopes to inspire your participation in protecting special places for future generations.
Phillip carrying his 25-pound pack, with sandhill cranes overhead

A Burn for the Prairie

Members of our stewardship team completed their annual “pack test” recently as part of fire training. This time their task was to carry a 25-pound backpack for 2 miles in less than 30 minutes. Continue reading

Shawndra Miller

Communications Manager

Shawndra is in charge of sharing our story and connecting you to our work. Through our print and online materials, she hopes to inspire your participation in protecting special places for future generations.
George Washington Carver (front row, center). Public Domain.

Saluting Black Leaders, Past and Present

In honor of Black History Month, we’d like to lift up some historical (and present day) Black voices of the American environmental movement. Though often unsung, these and many other individuals deserve our gratitude for their leadership, resilience and innovation.

Continue reading

Shawndra Miller

Communications Manager

Shawndra is in charge of sharing our story and connecting you to our work. Through our print and online materials, she hopes to inspire your participation in protecting special places for future generations.
Wintercreeper smothers native wildflowers

Wintercreeper: From Ornament to Threat

Part of a series on invasive species by guest blogger Ed Pope

Wintercreeper is an invasive evergreen plant that can overrun native vegetation. It is capable of vining up to 50 feet in height on trees, shading them out. It can also be a ground cover, where it forms a dense mat that prevents native wildflowers from growing on forest floors. Continue reading

Ed Pope

Guest Blogger

Ed Pope is a retired engineer from Rolls-Royce and a CILTI member since 2002.