Harts Brook Nature Preserve and Arboretum
156 Ridge Road, Hartsdale
125 acres


mid-1903 -- the first Gillette razors and blades appeared on the market.

1904 -- president of the company, King Gillette, resigns as president before sailing with his family for London. Company sales rise considerably. Gillette regains a controlling stake in the company.

1910 -- rival Joyce buys two-thirds of Gillette's holdings.

1928 -- the market becomes turbulent. Longtime competitor Henry Gaisman "patented a new blade design and offered to sell it to Gillette. Rebuffed, he produced it himself and then sued Gillette for patent infringement after the company brought out a similar blade. Gillette merges with Gaisman's AutoStrop company." (FORTUNE SMALL BUSINESS, Wednesday, March 19, 2003, By Paul Lukas; http://www.fortune.com/fortune/smallbusiness/articles/0,15114,433734-2,00.html )

1932 -- Henry Gaisman, who had made his fortune as a founder of Gillette, purchases 135 acres from George Christiancy, a former United States minister to Peru. The property ran from the south side of Ridge Road and Hillcrest Avenue to Maple Avenue.

1957 -- Gaisman passes the title to the land to the New York Archdiocese with the understanding that he and his wife, Catherine, could live on the property as long as they so desired.

1974 -- Mr. Gaisman dies at the age of 104.

1995 -- his wife lives on the property until she moves to Connecticut in this year. The property was subsequently taken over by the Archdiocese, which leased the land to Marian Woods Convent, as a headquarters and future retirement home for aging nuns.

1999  --  Through efforts of the Committee to Save the Gaisman Property, 124 acres were purchased jointly by New York State, Westchester County and the Town of Greenburgh. Governor Pataki helped the town of Greenburgh acquire the Harts Brook property. 11.5 acres were retained by Marian Woods (the convent being located in the middle of the park property).


streams, ponds, and pristine woods


Former Gaisman Estate, including a barn, greenhouse and stone warming house by a pond. Includes about 10 acres cultivated with specimen trees, bushes, rolling lawns, and a master gardener's demonstration garden.


From the main parking lot you can take a circular clockwise tour around the woodlands perimeter of the park. Head northeast across the main access road to the Marian Woods Convent and then across the main exit road from the park. Pick up the orange trail and follow it to the blue trail. Follow the blue trail east and then southwest to the green trail. Take the green trail to the red trail which will bring you past the caretaker's house back to the parking lot.

A short trip to the pond is made by heading south from the parking lot on the yellow trail. The pond is surrounded by rosebay rhododendrons.

It is hoped that a east-west corridor route would extend from the Croton Aqueduct Trail in the west and head through Taxter Ridge to East Irvington Preserve, then follow a proposed “escarpment” trail to a link with the Rumbrook, Ridge Road Park, Harts Brook Park, the Greenburgh Nature Center, and finally the Bronx River Parkway.

(Source:   The Greening of Greenburgh, 1973 to 2003. The Aquisition of Wildlife Habitat and Protection of the Environment, by William Lawyer, Executive Director Greenburgh Nature Center.

8/17/04.  With Ceferino Santana, we walked a horseshoe pattern heading south via the yellow trail, then the green trail; made the base of the horseshoe by switching to the orange trail; transferred to the blue that brought us to the top of the triangle near the convent; then back to the green trail via the orange trail; the green trail took us back to the yellow trail (passed by the pond) and the yellow took us back to the parking lot.  Nice walk. Saw a beautiful, huge blooming inflorescence of the Hercules' club tree.  Dr. Patrick L. Cooney.

Dr. Patrick L. Cooney
* = 8/09/03, date plant found in bloom

Acer palmatum (Japanese maple)
Acer platanoides (Norway maple)
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Ailanthus altissima (tree of heaven)
Aralia spinosa (Hercules' club) 8/17/04
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Carpinus caroliniana (musclewood)
Carya cordiformis (bitternut hickory)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Carya tomentosa (mockernut hickory)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Castanea dentata (American chestnut)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Crataegus sp. (hawthorn)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Juglans nigra (black walnut) planted
Juniperus virginicus (red cedar)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Morus alba (white mulberry)
Nyssa sylvatica (tupelo)
Paulownia tomentosa (empress tree)
Picea abies (Norway spruce)
Pinus strobus (white pine)
Populus deltoides (cottonwood)
Prunus persica (peach tree) planted
Prunus serotina (black cherry)
Prunus sp. (cherry)
Pyrus malus (apple tree)
Pyrus communis (pear tree)
Pyrus sp. (crab apple)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Quercus prinus (chestnut oak)
Quercus rubra (red oak)
Quercus velutina (black oak)
Robinia pseudoacacia (black locust)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras)
Taxus sp. (yew)
Thuja occidentalis (arbor vitae) planted
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)
Ulmus americana (American elm)
Ulmus rubra (slippery elm)

Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Chimaphila maculata (striped wintergreen)
Clethra alnifolia (sweet pepper bush) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Cornus alternifolia (alternate-leaved dogwood)
Corylus sp. (hazel)
Euonymus alatus (winged euonymus)
Forsythia sp. (golden bells)
Hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel)
Hydrangea sp. (hydrangea)  planted 8/09/03 8/17/04
Hypericum prolificum (shrubby St. Johnswort) 8/09/03
Ilex crenata? (holly)
Juniperus sp. (juniper)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush)
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle)
Mitchella repens (partridgeberry)
Pachysandra terminalis (pachysandra)
Rhododendron maximum (rosebay rhododendron)
Rhododendron periclymenoides (pinxter flower)
Rhodotypos scandens (jetbead)
Rhus glabra (smooth sumac)
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)
Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose)
Rubus occidentalis (black raspberry)
Rubus phoenicolasius (wineberry)
Rubus sp. (black berry)
Salix discolor (pussy willow)
Spiraea japonica (Japanese spiraea)  planted 8/09/03
Spiraea tomentosa (steeplebush) planted 8/09/03
Syringa sp. (lilac)
Vaccinium corymbosum (high bush blueberry)
Vaccinium pallidum (hillside blueberry)
Viburnum acerifolium (maple-leaf viburnum)
Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum)
Viburnum opulus var. americanum (cranberry viburnum) planted
Vinca minor (periwinkle)

Calystegia sepium (hedge bindweed)
Celastrus orbiculatus (Asiatic bittersweet)
Cuscuta sp. (dodder) 8/17/04
Helix hedera (English ivy)
Lonicera japonica (Japanese honey suckle)
Parthenocissus quinquefolia (Virginia creeper)
Smilax rotundifolia (round-leaved greenbrier)
Solanum dulcamara (bittersweet nightshade) 8/09/03
Toxicodendron radicans (poison ivy)
Vitis aestivalis (summer grape)

Acalypha sp. (three-seeded mercury)
Achillea millefolium (common yarrow) 8/09/03
Actaea alba (doll's eyes)
Agrimonia gryposepala (common agrimony) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Alliaria petiolata (garlic mustard)
Allium tricoccum (wild ramps)
Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed)
Amphicarpaea bracteata (hog peanut)
Apocynum cannabinum (Indian hemp)
Aralia nudicaulis (wild sarsaparilla)
Aralia racemosa (spikenard) 8/09/03
Arctium minus (common burdock) 8/17/04
Arisaema tripyllum (Jack in the pulpit)
Artemisia annua (annual wormwort)
Artemisia vulgaris (common mugwort)
Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed)
Aster divaricatus (white wood aster) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Aster schreberi? (Schreber's aster)?
Bidens frondosa (beggar ticks)
Boehmeria cylindrica (false nettle)
Caulophyllum thalictroides (blue cohosh)
Chenopodium album (pigweed)
Chrysanthemum leucanthemum (ox-eye daisy) 8/09/03
Cimicifuga racemosa (bugbane)
Circaea lutetiana (enchanter's nightshade)
Cirsium arvense (Canada thistle)
Collinsonia canadensis (horsebalm)
Commelina communis (Asiatic dayflower) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Convallaria majalis (lily of the valley)
Conyza canadensis (horseweed) 8/17/04
Cryptotaenia canadensis (honewort)
Daucus carota (Queen Anne's lace) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Desmodium sp. (tick trefoil) 8/17/04
Duchesnea indica (Indian strawberry) 8/17/04
Epilobium coloratum (purple-leaved willow herb) 8/09/03
Erechtites hieraciifolia (pileweed)
Erigeron annuus (common daisy fleabane) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Eupatorium purpureum (sweet-scented Joe-Pye weed) 8/09/03
Eupatorium rugosum (white snakeroot) 8/09/03
Eupatorium sp. (Joe-Pye-weed) 8/09/03
Euphorbia maculata (spotted spurge)
Euthamia graminifolia (grass-leaved goldenrod) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Galium mollugo (wild madder) 8/09/03
Geranium maculatum (wild geranium)
Geum canadense (white avens) 8/17/04
Hieracium caespitosum (field hawkweed) 8/09/03
Hieracium paniculatum (panicled hawkweed) 8/17/04
Hosta sp. (hosta)
Hypericum perforatum (common St. Johnswort) 8/09/03
Impatiens capensis (orange jewelweed) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Lactuca canadensis (wild lettuce)
Lactuca serriola (prickly lettuce) 8/17/04
Laportea canadensis (wood nettle) 8/09/03
Lapsana communis (nipplewort) 8/09/03
Lobelia inflata (Indian tobacco) 8/09/03
Lycopus virginicus (Virginia bugleweed)
Lysimachia ciliata (fringed loosestrife) 8/09/03
Maianthemum canadense (Canada mayflower)
Medeola virginiana? (Indian cucumber root)?
Medicago lupulina (black medick) 8/09/03
Mimulus ringens (monkey flower) 8/09/03
Monotropa indica (Indian pipe)
Oenothera biennis (common evening primrose) 8/17/04
Oxalis sp. (yellow wood sorrel) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Phytolacca americana (pokeweed) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Pilea pumila (clearweed)
Plantago lanceolata (English plantain)
Plantago major (common plantain)
Polygonatum pubescens (hairy true Solomon's seal)
Polygonum cespitosum (cespitose smartweed) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Polygonum cuspidatum (Japanese knotweed)
Polygonum sp. (smartweed) 8/17/04 in the middle of the mud
Polygonum virginianum (jumpseed) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Portulaca oleracea (common purslane)
Potentilla canadensis (dwarf cinquefoil)
Potentilla simplex (common cinquefoil)
Prenanthes altissima (tall lettuce)
Prunella vulgaris (self-heal) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Pycnanthemum virginianum (Virginia mountain mint)
Rumex obtusifolius (broad dock)
Sanicula gregaria (cluster sanicle)
Sedum sp. (sedum)
Senecio vulgaris (common groundsel) 8/09/03
Silene vulgaris (bladder campion) 8/09/03
Smilacina racemosa (false Solomon's seal)
Solanum nigrum (black nightshade) 8/17/04
Solidago caesia (blue-stem goldenrod)
Solidago canadensis var. scabra (tall goldenrod) 8/17/04
Solidago juncea (early goldenrod) 8/17/04
Solidago spp. (goldenrods)
Symplocarpus foetidus (skunk cabbage)
Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion) 8/09/03
Thalictrum pubescens (tall meadowrue)
Trifolium pratense (red clover) 8/09/03 8/17/04
Trifolium repens (white clover) 8/17/04
Tussilago farfara (coltsfoot)
Urtica dioica var. dioica (stinging nettle) 8/17/04
Verbascum thapsus (common mullein) 8/09/03
Veronica officinalis (common speedwell)
Viola spp. (violet)
Yucca filamentosa (Adam's needle) planted

Juncus effusus (soft rush)
Juncus tenuis (path rush)

Carex laxiflora type (loose-flowered sedge type)
Carex vulpinoidea (fox sedge)
Cyperus esculentus or strigosus (nut or umbrella sedge)
Cyperus lupinus (sedge)
Scirpus atrovirens (dark green bulrush)

Cinna arundinacea (wood reed grass)
Digitaria sp. (crab grass)
Echinochloa sp. (barnyard grass)
Eleusine indica (zipper grass)
Microstegium vimineum (Japanese stilt grass)
Panicum clandestinum (deer-tongue grass)
Poa annua (annual bluegrass)
Poa compressa (Canada bluegrass)
Setaria faberi (nodding foxtail grass)

Athyrium filix-femina (lady fern)
Dryopteris intermedia (fancy woodfern)
Dryopteris marginalis (marginal woodfern)
Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern)
Osmunda cinnamomea (cinnamon fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)
Thelypteris noveboracensis (New York fern)