I have recently listed the home at 14987 Thicket Court in Waterford, Virginia. It’s a lovely modern home, with a gorgeous stone facade. It features vaulted ceilings and great floor plan, with four bedrooms. But what’s most amazing about this property isn’t what’s in the home, it’s what’s outside. The nearly 6-acre lot is a certified nature preserve that is home to some of Virginia’s increasingly rare wildlife.
There are walking trails cut throughout the property. They go through the pollinator garden area, into the woods and down to the stream.
The current owner installed nest boxes for screech owls and owls are nesting in them right now. There are three of them.
The owner has also set up nest boxes for bluebirds and woodpeckers. All of these boxes have been installed with predator guards to help protect the inhabitants.
The little stream that runs across the property is wonderful and attracts many native species, including warblers, heron, hawks, catbirds, thrashers and many more. The water is cool and a nice place for wading on a hot summer day. Crayfish and and fresh water fish swim in the stream.
The pollinator garden is a registered Monarch Waystation. It was the first in the country, #81 — there are now over 11,000. The garden has gorgeous native plants that are perennial, coming up each year. The plants include milkweed (the only plant that Monarch butterflies use to lay their eggs on and eat as caterpillars), Joe pye weed, New York Ironweed, Asters, Goldenrod, Bee Balm, Bergamot, Compass plant, columbine, wingstem. It is so alive through the summer and bats come in the evening, darting around to enjoy their own dinners. Mama deers bed their fawns down in it through the spring to keep their young ones safe.
The owner has maintained a bird list and identified more than 95 species of birds on the property, including Bald Eagles that occasionally perch in the trees.
Around the property there are native plants such as Spicebush, Black cherry, Black walnut, Locust, Sassafras, Sumac, trumpet vine, virginia creeper, Ash, Sycamore, Pawpaw, Service berry, and more – these are all host plants for native butterflies and creates an incredible diversity of butterfly species here not to mention the other wildlife food for birds and mammals.
In preparation for sale of the home, the owner has reluctantly installed a chimney cap to exclude the birds that have nested here since 1999. These are lovely, beneficial birds. To see them veer and sweep across the sky at dusk is absolutely magical. The owner would love to find a fellow nature lover who would welcome the birds and realize they can continue to nest on the property without causing damage to the chimney.
The two ponds attract a number of different species of amphibians. There are no fish on purpose. The fish would eat the tadpoles. Amphibian species include: Wood frogs, spring peepers, gray tree frogs, American tads, pickerel frogs, green frogs, bull frogs, and Jefferson Salamanders. Most of these species are only in the ponds for a few weeks to breed, then return to the woods but a few like the green frigs are there through the summer and overwinter in the bottom of the ponds – which were dug to have a depth below the frostline allowing green frogs to survive.
Facing east and perched on a rise, the home offers a beautiful view of sunrise in the morning and a classic sunset over the Blue Ridge mountains in the evening. There’s a large deck to enjoy the view.
So, ideally, we’re not just looking for your average home buyer. We’re looking for a nature lover, someone who would be willing to continue nearly two decades of preservation. We’re looking for someone who won’t simply appreciate this incredible setting and it’s inhabitants, but act as patron and protector. If you know that special person we’re looking for, please share this post with them and help us connect them to their new home.