03/16/19 8:00am



The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.
— F. Scott Fitzgerald

I believe trees are to be treasured and preserved whenever it is feasible.

I feel elevated and simultaneously humbled looking up at a stately oak. Recently, my family was walking through the Old Nursery Woodlands Preserve and came across a specimen of untold years. We had a moment of joy (and a great photograph) when three of us, holding hands, extended our arms and could barely reach around the giant truck to enclose its 15-foot circumference. (more…)

01/26/18 10:00am


The Community Preservation Fund (CPF) was created in 1998 by a referendum in the five East End towns establishing a real estate transfer tax.

The basic plan is the imposition of a one-time, 2-percent tax paid by the buyer. The first $250,000 of the purchase price in East Hampton, Southampton and Shelter Island is exempt for the tax, and $150,000 in Riverhead and Southold. The state collects the tax and each town receives its 2-percent money to purchase open space to preserve. (more…)

07/16/17 8:00am


Long Island, with a centuries-long history of farming, has undergone an agricultural revolution in just a few decades, sparked in 1973 by a pair of pioneers in planting grapes for fine wine, Louisa and Alex Hargrave.

Ms. Hargrave in her wonderful book, “The Vineyard,” writes: “I was 25 and Alex was 27. With no farm experience and little life experience, we really didn’t think the vines would need much attention. Before we bought the farm in Cutchogue, neither one of us had grown so much as a vegetable garden … The idea of the vineyard at that point was still a fantasy whose only tangible basis in reality lay in the 10,000 rooted, grafted vines we had bought.” (more…)