While, every conservation decision is unique and personal, working with TennGreen ensures that your land will be permanently protected from development and enjoyed for generations to come. 

Getting Started

Do you ever wonder what will happen to your land when you no longer own it? What will become of your favorite spot if your property is sold? Or, what will happen to the family farm once it is passed on to the next generation? 

Since 1998, TennGreen has worked in partnership with private landowners and their families to protect the places they value. TennGreen is passionate about helping landowners conserve the natural characteristics of their properties and the critical benefits—clean air and water, natural and scenic areas, fresh food resources, and recreational opportunities—that these special places provide to their local communities. 


Whether you own five acres or five thousand acres, you have an opportunity to make a visionary, lasting impact on the world. To make the best possible decision, it is important to clearly understand your needs and goals.


Click here to view a PDF version of TennGreen's Protect Your Land brochure, which provides an overview of the conservation options available to landowners who are interested in permanently preserving their forests, farms, wetlands, and wildlife habitat.



Conservation Options


OPTION 1: Conservation Easement
A conservation easement is a voluntary, legal agreement between a landowner and a land trust that permanently limits certain uses of a property in order to protect its ecological values. It allows landowners to maintain many of their rights — including the right to own and use the land, sell it, or pass it down to heirs. 


Conservation easements run with the land in perpetuity, meaning that all future owners must abide by the easement’s terms and restrictions. Each agreement is different, and TennGreen works with owners and their families to determine easement restrictions based on their needs and the property’s unique characteristics. 

Once a conservation easement is completed, TennGreen is responsible for “stewardship” of the land, and ensuring that the terms of the easement are upheld. 


Benefits of Conservation Easements:

  • You still own your land 

  • You may qualify to receive an income tax deduction (federal and/or state) 

  • You may significantly reduce estate taxes, increasing your future heirs' ability to keep the land intact 

  • You will be providing public benefits to your community, such as clean air and water, scenic views, and wildlife habitat

  • You will protect the land you love and its natural treasures for generations to come 


Conservation Easement Terms and Restrictions:

Conservation easements are the number one tool for protecting privately owned land, because they offer a great deal of flexibility with regard to terms and restrictions. You can choose to protect your entire property or a part of it, and set restrictions based on what you are trying to accomplish and/or protect. 

Once you have a clear understanding of your needs and goals, you can work with TennGreen to develop a plan that is right for your land and right for you.


Examples of Restrictions:

  • Limitation on the number of houses that can be built on the property 

  • Reduction in the number of times that the land may be subdivided 

  • Prohibition of mineral, oil, and gas extraction

  • Restriction on non-sustainable timber harvesting practices


OPTION 2: Land Donation

TennGreen also accepts gifts of land. These donations are often the simplest way to protect and conserve your land for future generations.


Land Donation Options:

  • Outright donation of land

  • Donation of land in installments or partial interests over a period of years 

  • Donation of land by will

  • Donation with a lifetime income

  • Donation of remainder interest in land with reserved life estate 


Benefits of Land Donation:

  • You will no longer face the burdens that go with owning and overseeing the land 

  • You may receive significant tax benefits and you can work with TennGreen to donate the land in installments or partial interests to maximize these benefits 

  • You will be providing public benefits to your community, such as clean air and water, scenic views, recreational and educational opportunities, and wildlife habitat

  • You will protect the land you love and its natural treasures for generations to come 



Take the Next Step

TennGreen wants to alleviate your questions and concerns and help you choose the best path to your legacy. As a first step, please call us at (615) 329-4441 to set up a free, confidential meeting. 


Wildlife Habitat Conservation Assistance Fund

TennGreen has officially launched its Wildlife Habitat Conservation Assistance Fund (WHCAF) as a program to be piloted through 2019. This fund will defray expenses incurred by TennGreen on behalf of private landowners who need financial assistance to protect their land with a conservation easement. If you are interested in protecting your property in perpetuity and may qualify for financial assistance, TennGreen invites you to complete and submit an application. Click here now to learn more about the WHCAF program. 


Please note that the information above is intended only as an introduction. All donations are subject to approval via TennGreen’s Gift Acceptance Policy. Please be sure to consult your legal and financial advisors for counsel and tax advice.


By Allen Branton


"In 2002, Gretel and I were searching for a home out in the country near Nashville. After searching out 100 miles on all points of the compass, we found it. The remote wild hollows, small waterfalls, and countless springs that flow into Blackburn Fork State Scenic River captured us on our first visit. We originally purchased 141 acres but after exploring the river up to the high bluffs overlooking the river gorge, we fell even more in love with the land and began acquiring adjoining tracts. 


In 2007, we contacted TennGreen looking for counsel on how to protect the land. By the end of the year we donated a conservation easement on 414 acres along both sides of the Blackburn Fork State Scenic River. We are very happy with our decision to protect the land and also to have a previously un-named stream named Chandler Branch after our daughter. 


Four years later, TennGreen purchased 211 acres for the creation of Cummins Falls six miles upstream from the 414 acres already protected on Black Burn Fork State Scenic River. Seeing so many people explore the Blackburn Fork River at Cummins Falls confirmed our long held belief that it truly is an amazing place and we hoped that our land could be not only protected from development but also open to the public. We then decided to donate our entire property, except for seven acres including Chandler Branch, to TennGreen and we are pleased that it has become a Wildlife Management Area protecting habitat for Cerulean Warblers and a diversity of species. 


My career is primarily creating lighting for TV and annual award shows which requires constant travel. Returning to rest, explore and fish along the Blackburn Fork has been a wonderful experience enriching our lives in so many ways. Knowing it will be open for the public to enjoy and protected in perpetuity gives us a profound sense of satisfaction."