“If one way be better than another,

that you may be sure is nature’s way.”

– Aristotle

Conservation News | May 2020

Conservation & Stewardship News


Farms for the Future Moving Forward

Long Island farmers are moving full steam ahead into the growing season. The food and agricultural products they provide are an essential part of our lives. Our local farmers are out in the fields every day tending the soil, prepping the fields, planting seeds and seedlings to help us all put food on the table for our families.
In the Fields
The Trust’s staff is working in the fields to get farmers and community gardeners on the land this spring.
  • We are offering community gardens at both Bridge Gardens (Bridgehampton) and at the Ag Center at Charnews Farm (Southold) for families interested in growing their own food.
  • The Quail Hill Farm crew in Amagansett is in the fields sowing and planting for the upcoming CSA season – which will start in late May. There are a variety of CSA offerings for you to choose from – and we still have a few summer shares available. Join today!
  • The Trust staff is also working with 28 different farm operations, providing access to farmland – over 200 acres. This includes both long-established farms looking for additional land to cultivate as well as new start-up farms that are just “getting off the ground.” Click here for a list of farmers we are leasing to in 2020.

Land Protection Efforts Continue

As this crisis has pointed out, access to locally grown food and agricultural products is a necessity. Ensuring that our agricultural resources are available into the future is a pressing need and one our Conservation Planning staff is stridently working toward.
In addition to getting farms up and running this season, the Trust is working with our partners to protect more agricultural lands in Suffolk County. With only 19,000 of the County’s 35,000 acres of farmland protected, there’s lots more to do!
The Trust is working on a number of new farmland preservation opportunities in partnership with State, County, and Town farmland preservation programs — these programs can provide additional funding that builds upon the private support for conservation you provide. We hope to announce additional farmland preservation closings in the coming months.
To date, the Trust has been involved in the protection of over 6,000 acres of farmland on Long Island. To learn more about these protection efforts, visit our online (interactive) map.
Thank you for working with us to ensure a future with locally grown food!

Looking for Local Food?

Are you looking for access to early spring vegetables and flowers? Our thanks to the Long Island Farm Bureau for creating an online resource list of farmers offering products during the spring and into the season.
Know about a farm and its product availability that’s not listed? Contact Lauren McGrath at the Long Island Farm Bureau: LMcgrath@LIFB.com or let us know and we’ll pass on the info.
And the East End Food Institute has launched a virtual farmers market to order locally-made goods for safe pick-up or home delivery across the East End. The Virtual Farmers Market currently features ready-to-heat meals, snacks, baked goods, personal care products and even pet treats — all made on Long Island and most featuring local ingredients. Available for pick up and home delivery.
And, the Cornell Cooperative Extension Marine Programs Choose Local FISH initiative is keeping a directory of local fish markets and fishermen offering curbside and delivery services.


We are exploring ways to recreate many of our programs into virtual events. So please stay in touch with us and visit our online calendar and blog at www.PeconicLandTrust.org for the latest updates on programs and news. Here are a few upcoming and online programs:
Women in Farming:
Growing Food on Long Island,
a Zoom conversation
hosted by Peconic Land Trust
Thursday, May 7 at 6:00 pm
Please join us to hear the stories and perspectives of local farmers doing great work on Long Island.
Moderated by journalist Charity Robey, panelists include Patty Gentry of Early Girl Farm, Jennifer Halsey-Dupree of Milk Pail Farm, and Jennifer Pike of Pike Farms. This program is in partnership with the Southampton Arts Center.
Registration Required to participate in the Zoom call — click here to register now.
We will also be live streaming on Facebook!

The Vegetable Garden Step 1: Your Soil’s Health

Online now!
Please join Bridge Gardens’ Director Rick Bogusch and Greener Pastures Organics Paul Wagner to learn how to maximize your garden’s soil health. Hear more about the importance of compost and applying compost tea, as well as the science behind creating great soil to ensure the best foundation for the garden. The workshop is presented in a series of short videos with Rick and Paul.
. . . and check out Rick’s series of videos on planting beets, leafy greens and carrots! Watch now here.
Birdhouse Building Online Workshop with Brian Kennedy…
Coming Soon!
Video instructions online May 15
Looking for an activity? Join us for a virtual workshop with Brian Kennedy of FixHampton who will guide you through building your very own birdhouse for our feathered friends!
For do-it-yourselfers, get the plans and instructions to create the birdhouse from a 4 foot long 1″x6″ pine board.
Rather get your own kit of pre-cut and pre-drilled materials? We are putting together a limited number of kits that you can purchase from our website (click here). The pre-purchased kits will then be available for contact-less pick up starting May 8. Once you order your kit, we’ll set up a pick up time for you. Locations will be on the North and South Forks.
Have questions? Contact Kathy Kennedy at 631.283.3195, ext. 29 or KKennedy@PeconicLandTrust.org

A Hopeful Sign for the Environment

in the New York State Budget

In these challenging times, we applaud our statewide representatives — and send a special shout out to our Long Island delegation — for their recognition that the health of our people and the economy are deeply connected to a healthy planet.
In early April, facing many hard decisions, the Governor and the Legislature agreed on a budget that continues to invest in our working farms and natural lands. These important lands provide for us in so many ways, including producing healthy local foods, protecting our drinking waters, sustaining our fishing and recreational waters, providing places to walk, hike and explore, and clean air to breathe.
State environmental programs are credited with generating a $7 return on investment for every dollar spent. We hope that these programs will endure in the face of these trying financial times for our State and local governments.
Click here to learn more about the Environmental Protection Fund, the Restore Mother Nature Environmental Bond Act and the Farmland for a New Generation program.

Places to Visit

All of us at the Trust hope you and your family and friends are all safe and healthy during these challenging times. As we all do everything we can to fight the spread of COVID-19, spending time in the out-of-doors can provide psychic relief and promote health.
While all of our buildings and facilities are closed to the public, the grounds of Bridge Gardens, the Ag Center at Charnews Farm, and Quail Hill Farm are open for solitary walks — as well as our hiking trails on preserves. Please stay safe, stay home if you are feeling unwell, practice physical social distancing (a minimum of 6 feet), wear a mask or face covering in public places, and avoid crowds. Please follow the guidelines of the CDC, State, County and Town officials.
If the gardens or trails are crowded, and you cannot maintain social distancing, please come back at another day or time. We thank you for your cooperation.
To learn more about the trails in the area, visit our Places to Visit page on our website.

Connecting Everyone to Nature

Wolf Preserve Update

Thanks to a generous donation of $50,000 from a New York-based foundation, the Trust’s goal of creating an accessible trail system at Wolf Preserve in Southold can begin.
As many of us have discovered over the past several weeks, time spent outside in nature makes us feel calmer and happier. Many studies have shown just how important it can be to our health and well-being.
This is especially true for those facing physical and sensory disabilities. People with mobility and cognitive restrictions have the hardest time enjoying the outdoors, due to the access barriers that exist in so many public parks and preserves.
The Trust’s Wolf Preserve is the perfect place for an accessible trail system. Once the project is complete, the trails will cross freshwater wetlands, meadows and woodlands.
The estimated total cost of this project is $2.8 million.
When Lenore Wolf donated her 23-acre property to the Peconic Land Trust she wanted to create a space where “people would have a place to breathe and renew their connection to the land.”
The Trust wants to honor Lenore’s wishes by creating a place that is more accessible and where more people can connect with nature.
If you would like to support this project, contact Amanda Abraham.
One of the original Community Supported Agriculture farms in the country, Quail Hill Farm still has openings for our summer share season. With over 35 acres in production and 500 varieties of vegetables, herbs, fruits and flowers, there are multiple ways to participate in the summer’s bounty: including new in 2020 Box Share pick up at Bridge Gardens in Bridgehampton.
To learn more and to join the farm today, please visit our website or call 631.283.3195.
Interested in growing your own food? The Community Gardens at the Agricultural Center at Charnews Farm in Southold has space available. Community gardens provide more than just rich soil for individuals and families to grow their own food, herbs, and flowers. They also provide a way to stay active and healthy. There are 4 sizes to choose from — from 4’x12′ raised beds to 30’x20′ plots. There’s something for any level of experience or need.
To learn more and to join the community garden today, please visit our websiteor call 631.283.3195.
An annual membership to Bridge Gardens, located at 36 Mitchell Lane in Bridgehampton, starts at only $75 and supports the Gardens’ growth. The gardens are open daily, 10 am to 4 pm, with free admission.
For more info and to purchase a membership for yourself, or to give as a gift, visit our website!

Tax Time is Right Around the Corner,

Is a QCD Right for You?

Are you 70½ or older and looking for a way to reduce your taxable income? A Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD), to the Peconic Land Trust from your IRA might be just the solution. Here are some of the advantages of a QCD:
  • It reduces your adjusted gross income (AGI) by up to $100,000, so less income is taxable.
  • It lowers the taxable portion of your Social Security benefit, which could potentially decrease your Medicare premiums.
  •  It helps maximize the tax impact of your charitable giving, especially for those who are no longer eligible to claim the itemized deduction.
  • It can satisfy some or all of your required minimum distribution.
  • It can help lower your taxable estate, which may defray future state and federal taxes.
Interested? Please talk to your IRA custodian, financial planner or accountant to see if this option will work for you.

Climate Change: Eco-Tips

On Pollinators:

Monarch Butterfly Northward Migration Has Started

The annual migration north of the Monarch butterfly is underway. We expect they will arrive in our area in mid-to-late May. The Monarch butterfly population continues to be under stress . . . but these and other pollinators are an important part of our ecosystem and our local food production.
At Bridge Gardens, we have a few kinds of milkweed at the gardens.
Monarch caterpillars only feed on the common milkweed. We have planted that on the south side of the gardens between the community and rose gardens.
A note of caution from Rick: the common milkweed is fast growing and can overtake your gardens. For smaller home gardens, you can focus on the plants that provide nectar to the adults.
Adult Monarchs will feed on many types of nectar plants, including swamp milkweed and other perennials like cone flowers, tall verbena, and butterfly bush.
At Quail Hill Farm, to help support the Monarch and other important pollinators, we planted the roadside fields on Deep Lane (Hurricane Hill) with milkweed to provide a larger area of food for the Monarch caterpillars. Milkweed is also growing throughout the farm, along with buckwheat, butterfly weed, yarrow, and goldenrod.
We are also installing cover crops on farm fields that are in rotation this year throughout the North and South Forks to provide additional habitat for the Monarch and other pollinators. The mixes in these cover crops include sunflower and buckwheat, which attract and feed the pollinators we depend on.
Interested in learning more and adding plants to your gardens that will support Monarchs and other pollinators? Here are a few resources:
We are on Social Media:
@PeconicLandTrust @BridgeGardens @QuailHillFarm @AgCenterCharnews
@PeconicLandTrust @QuailHillFarm
Follow us for the latest updates on programs and visits to nature preserves.
Did you see our Earth Day celebration?
Tag us on Facebook or Instagram with your photos of the places you know and love on Long Island!

Thank you for your support of our work.

Peconic Land Trust | 631.283.3195 | Info@PeconicLandTrust.org
Peconic Land Trust conserves Long Island’s Working Farms, Natural Lands,
and Heritage for our Communities Now and in the Future.
To learn more, visit us online at
The Peconic Land Trust is a 501(c)(3) non profit organization.
Financial Disclosure Statement: A copy of the last financial report filed with the
New York State Attorney General may be obtained in writing from:
New York State Attorney General’s Charities Bureau, Attn: FOIL Officer,
120 Broadway, New York, NY 10271 or
Peconic Land Trust, PO Box 1776, Southampton, NY 11969.
Stay Connected!


Peconic Land Trust, Inc | 296 Hampton Road, PO Box 1776, Southampton, NY 11969



AAQ Resource: Westhampton Architectural Glass