Peter's Gate Preserve
North Sasco Common,
Westport, Connecticut
6 acres

Aspetuck Land Trust  (ALT) 


US 95 north to exit 19; turn left onto Center Street; drive 0.2 of a mile and turn left onto Route 1 (Boston Post Road); drive 0.3 of a mile and turn right onto Bulkley Avenue North; drive 0.3 of a mile and turn right onto North Sasco Common.   Park on the north side of the street near, but not too close, to the stop sign.   The path starts on the south side of the street, just east of the wooden guard rail by the sewer grate. 


11/09/2005.  On a cool/cold morning, Ceferino Santana, dog Sonar and I toured this preserve.  A resident of the area was worried that we might be someone who was going to cut down some of the tress.  We assured him we were just doing a plant survey.  He seemed relieved.  He said that they had a trail through the preserve but then that was closed down and then someone cut down some trees because they blocked the view  -- in short, people seemed to be doing anything they wanted with the preserve.  He said the thought that the trail might take one to Sasco Pond. 

Intrigued by the talk of a trail, we headed into the interior and found it.  It is a little overgrown, but still very visible.  After a short walk south, the trail met up with a stream.  I figured maybe we could follow the stream down to Sasco Creek and then down to Sasco Pond.  But we soon found ourselves in a low wetlands area, cris-crossed by many streams.  The area was a little wet and the ground very soft and somewhat muddy. 

I think we saw Sasco Creek in the background, but after trying various ways to get to the creek, we had to give up.  The area is just too wet and muddy.  One would need boots and even then it might be risky because one could get stuck in deeper mud areas.  So we turned back and picked up the trail.  We followed to its exit/entrance on North Sasco Common, just east of the wood guard rail by the sewer grate.  Dr. Patrick L. Cooney.

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney
* = plant blooming on date of field trip, 11/09/2005

Acer platanoides (Norway maple)
Acer rubrum (red  maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Carya sp. (hickory)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore)
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Taxus sp. (yew)
Ulmus rubra (slippery elm)

Shrubs and sub-shrubs:
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Cornus amomum (swamp dogwood)
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus)
Forsythia sp. (golden bells)
Ilex verticillata (winterberry)
Ligustrum sp. (privet)
Lindera benzoin (spice bush)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus hispidus (swamp dewberry)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus phoenicolasius (wineberry)
Rubus sp. (blackberry)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry)
Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum)
Viburnum sieboldii (Siebold's viburnum)

Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Euonymus fortunii (Fortune's euonymus)
Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle)
Smilax rotundifolia (round-leaved greenbrier)
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis sp. (grape)

Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Aster cordifolius (heart-leaved aster)     *
Geum canadense (white avens)
Iris sp. (blue or yellow flag)
Oxalis sp. (yellow wood sorrel)
Peltandra virginica (arrow arum)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose smartweed)     *
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed)
Rumex acetosella (sheep sorrel)
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Urtica dioica var. procera (tall nettle)

Carex laxiflora type (loose-flowered type sedge)

Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass
Setaria faberi (nodding foxtail grass)

Lycopodium obscurum (ground pine)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern)