MOONBEAMS NATURE SANCTUARY
Prosperous Valley Road, Town of Walkill, Orange County, NY
150 acres 


Directions:

Take US 87 40 miles from Hastings-on-Hudson to Route 17 north (the Quickway).  Take exit 118 Fair Oaks.  Turn left at end of exit, pass over highway and turn right on Bloomingburg Road. After passing through Fair Oaks, Prosperous Valley Road is a left turn and Moonbeam Sanctuary is a little over 2 miles from the beginning of the road. There is only parking room for about two cars.  


This nature conservancy property of 150 acres may be changing ownership. Unmarked paths through fields and forest explore an abandoned dairy farm. The most interesting feature is the Shawangunk Kill, which forms the parcel's western boundary.

No dogs allowed. Open dawn to dusk.


History:

The house here is private (belongs to the Moons, who gifted the farm to the Conservancy), but the property on both sides of the road belongs to the preserve. Trails begin opposite the house at the preserve sign and on the same side as the house at the far north corner of their private property.

The land was used as a diary farm. In the late 1860s, the railroads crossed the property. In 1961 Mrs. Truman J. Moon and her daughter, Margaret Moon, acquired the land. In 1971 they gave the land to the TNC in honor of Truman J. and Lena Jordan Moon.


Habitats:

There are fields, forest, a pond and a creek within a deep embankment and woods.


Trails:

The trails goes on both sides of Prosperous Valley Road. Going southeast you go to fields and deciduous woodland and then to the banks of the Shawangunk Kill. Also here are the Bear Swamp, the Downs Swamps, and a small swamp known as Lily Swamp, along with Peg's Pond. If you go west the trail goes to meadow, red maple forest, and shrub swamp.


PLANT LIST:

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney


Trees:
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Amelanchier arborea (shadbush)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Juniperus virginiana (red cedar)
Nyssa sylvatica (tupelo)
Pinus strobus (white pine)
Populus deltoides (cottonwood)
Populus tremuloides (quaking aspen)
Prunus serotina (black cherry) 5/04/98
Pyrus malus (apple tree) 5/04/98
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Salix sp. (black willow?)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Ulmus sp. (elm)

Shrubs:
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry) 5/04/98
Cornus racemosa (gray stem dogwood)
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle) 5/04/98
Lonicera tatarica (Tatarian honeysuckle) 5/04/98
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Spiraea tomentosa (steeplebush)
Vaccinium corymbosum (highbush blueberry) 5/04/98
Vaccinium pallidum (hillside blueberry)
Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum)

Vines:
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)

Herbs:
Achillea millefolium (yarrow)
Antennaria plantaginifolia (plantain-leaved pussytoes)
Arctium sp. (burdock )
Barbarea vulgaris (common wintercress) 5/04/98
Erythronium americanum (trout lily)
Fragaria virginiana (common strawberry) 5/04/98
Geranium maculatum (wild geranium) 5/04/98
Impatiens capensis (orange jewelweed)
Maianthemum canadense (mayflower)
Potentilla simplex (common cinquefoil) 5/04/98
Ranunculus bulbosus (bulbous buttercup) 5/04/98
Senecio sp. (ragwort) 5/04/98
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Taraxacum officinale (dandelion) 5/04/98
Trifolium pratense (red clover)
Typha latifolia (cattail)
Viola sororia (common blue violet) 5/04/98

Rushes and Sedges:
Carex stricta (tussock sedge)
Luzula multiflora (wood rush)

Grasses:
Alopecurus sp. (foxtail bristle grass)
Anthoxanthum odoratum (sweet vernal grass) 5/04/98

Ferns and Fern Allies:
Equisetum arvense (field horsetail)
Equisetum sylvaticum (forest horsetail)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)