Habitat Enhancement

Overview

Our habitat is made up of a complex, delicately balanced network of living things—all in need of healthy air, nourishing food, and clean water. MITRE’s commitment to sustainability extends to preserving that balance at our facilities and providing opportunities for our team to help improve and protect the environment on- and off-site. 

Employee Gardens

On-site gardens at MITRE’s McLean and Bedford locations offer an opportunity for employees to step into nature and engage with the landscape outside our office windows. In addition to tending to and harvesting from MITRE gardens, it’s a chance for our employees to give back to our community and work side by side with colleagues from across MITRE’s vast array of capabilities.

Getting started with MITRE gardens is as simple as a quick sign-up—whether you’re flexing your green thumb for the first time, or a master gardener on your own time, our team is always looking for those who want to make a direct impact: 

[McLean]

[Bedford]

Garden Club

Native Plants

Landscaping MITRE facilities with native plants isn’t just about beautifying our campuses—even if the end result is visually appealing. 

By choosing native plants, we’re ensuring a landscaped environment that is adapted to each site’s specific temperature and rainfall conditions, making it more resilient against local insect populations and less reliant on day-to-day upkeep. The end result is a switch to a landscape in need of fewer fertilizers and pesticides, and less watering outside of regular rainfall. 

Planting native species is also our way of being a good neighbor to a wide variety of pollinators and wildlife that share the environment around our campuses. In addition to providing shelter, native plants offer greater nutritional value to local wildlife and promote biodiversity around our sites.

Wildlife Habitat

Planting native and pollinator-friendly species creates the ideal environment for the wildlife living alongside MITRE facilities. These plants provide better, more appropriate food and shelter for the butterflies, insects, birds, and other living things that call our campuses home—and with less need for pesticides or fertilizers, native plants also protect species from coming into contact with harmful chemicals. 

To further reduce pesticide use, we’re choosing an all-natural pest-control solution: installing bat boxes. By eating insects that would otherwise damage the landscape, attracting bats to our campuses can keep the bug population in check and limit the need for chemical solutions. 

Civic Time Activities

Getting involved in habitat enhancement may begin on-site at MITRE, but it doesn’t have to end there. To provide more opportunities to make a positive impact on the environment around us and the communities we serve, MITRE has civic time allowances that can be used to support local habitats.

The opportunities below are just a starting point—when it comes to habitat cleanup, creation, and protection, there’s no shortage of local and community-based organizations with a commitment to stewardship, problem-solving and service that mirror our values at MITRE.

Get Involved

Get Involved Anywhere

Volunteer with the CleanUp Crew — This easy-to-use app from the Clean Planet Project tracks your litter count and volunteer hours—and offers a Trash Talk forum to post your hauls for the competitive cleaners among us.

Justserve.org — If you don’t see an opportunity of interest listed here, or you work further afield than MITRE’s Bedford and McLean locations, JustServe offers a search engine to locate volunteer opportunities near you.

Get Involved in Bedford

Waltham Fields Community Farm — You can drop in on your own schedule, or reach out to coordinate a time with a group to volunteer in the fields on this sustainable farm committed to feeding those in need, preserving open spaces, and training sustainable farmers.

Mass Audubon — From trail maintenance to gardening to tracking local bird populations, the Massachusetts Audubon Society offers a wide range of volunteer programs to preserve and protect wildlife across the state.

​​OARS — Dedicated to protecting, improving, and preserving the Asssabet, Sudbury, and Concord Rivers, this nonprofit offers volunteer opportunities from water sample gathering and invasive species removal [AB1] to community outreach programs.

Nashua River Watershed Association — Volunteer with the NRWA to help track water quality, protect wildlife, and reduce invasive plant species along the Nashua River.

Get Involved in McLean

Clean Fairfax Community Clean Up Program — Coordinating a cleanup through the Clean Fairfax Council allows this government-affiliated nonprofit to track efforts across the county. By submitting your plan 10 business days in advance, the Clean Fairfax Council will also provide the supplies you need to facilitate your project.

Potomac River Watershed Cleanup — With the option to join an already-scheduled cleanup or organize your own, there’s no shortage of opportunities to protect area waterways and the ecosystems around them.

Before signing up, please note that all Civic Time hours must be pre-approved through the appropriate channels—the opportunities above are suggestions at this time. As MITRE continues to expand employee engagement in the habitat we coexist with, we’re looking forward to hearing from you about the best possible programs.

Habitat Resources

Making a positive impact on the habitat around you doesn’t have to end when the work day does. By changing your approach to planting, watering, pesticide and fertilizer use, and the living things that share habitats with humans, there are almost limitless opportunities to bring lessons learned from MITRE habitat enhancement efforts into your own backyard.

Resources

Gardening for pollinators

Incorporating native plants into your residential landscape

Grow native Massachusetts

[Take the Healthy Yard pledge]