Why You Should Visit
The preserve features a mix of (mostly hilly) pitch pine and oak woodlands, open fields, a small pond and a small shrub swamp. The property sits on the Martha’s Vineyard moraine, meaning that its topography is hillier and more varied than that of most of our other Islands preserves, making it a rewarding place to explore. It abuts other protected land holdings and provides some of the best hiking on the Vineyard.
Why TNC Selected This Site
The Hoft Farm property offers a unique perspective on the history of Martha’s Vineyard’s natural landscapes and the impact of humans on these landscapes. The 90 acres include a number of parcels of land in various stages of use and recovery. This tract was acquired largely because of the presence of a farm house, which was promptly expanded and renovated into the present-day Hoft Farm Field Station. The farm house overlooks Blackwater and Duarte’s Ponds, artificial impoundments on Blackwater Brook.
What TNC Is Doing
A farmhouse on the property is a private residence used as a field station to house TNC staff and equipment, as well as interns from a variety of conservation organizations on the Vineyard. The field station also supports TNC's ecological restoration of sandplain grasslands, a globally rare community type. TNC co-leads the Sandplain Grassland Network, a partnership focused on developing solutions to restoration challenges.