Hammond Pond

Hammond Pond Aerial View
Hammond Pond, a kettle pond, occupies 22 acres in Chestnut Hill and is the only surviving “Great Pond” east of the Berkshires.

In the 1950’s, the Chestnut Hill Shopping Center was built on its southern border.  Progress and asphalt began to take its toll.  In the 1990's a group of concerned citizens founded The Friends of Hammond Pond. Grants were applied for and approved to study the health of the pond. Scientists reported the accelerated growth of aquatic plant life known as eutrophication. As can be clearly seen in the aerial view, the pond is severely compromised.  Runoff from Route 9, a heavily traveled road that runs from Boston to the western suburbs, and the shopping center’s roof and parking lots, storm drains, sediment and sand, organic debris, trash, petroleum products, the deposits from Canada Geese and beer cans all contribute to the problem.  

The pond is now listed by the state as an impaired water body, but still it provides a habitat for plants and wildlife in the middle of an urban area. The endangered water violet (Hottonia inflata) and twenty-eight bird species live at the pond. Forty-seven upland bird species visit the pond during their migration. 

Our club members have been working in partnership with the City of Newton to restore this special habitat. In 2006, bio-retention beds and two perimeter sand filters were installed at the southern edge. The members of the Chestnut Hill Garden Club took on the task of designing vegetative buffers and continue to act as stewards of this unique landscape. The garden was the first of its type on municipal land in the state of Massachusetts and it is used as a model for other municipalities.