Montini Open Space Preserve Management Plan

Protecting open space in Sonoma Valley

The Montini Open Space Preserve is a 98-acre preserve that sits along the northern edge of the city of Sonoma, and is a recreational resource for all who visit. Ag + Open Space protected this land for many reasons, including its scenic prominence, its recreational value, and its oak woodlands, grasslands and wetlands that are home to a diversity of native wildlife and plants, including the special status Franciscan onion and narrow-anthered Brodiaea. 

In 2005, Ag + Open Space partnered with the City of Sonoma and the California Coastal Conservancy to create the preserve and protect it with a conservation easement, before transferring ownership to the City of Sonoma. The preserve is now managed by the Sonoma Ecology Center under contract to the City of Sonoma. During development of the preserve, Ag + Open Space also worked with the community to create two miles of trails around the property before it opened in 2013. 

In the 1800s, as settlers and missionaries arrived in Sonoma Valley, these lands were taken from the southern Miwok that had cared for these lands for millenia. Eventually, the preserve became part of the 6,094-acre Pueblo Lands of Sonoma Land Grant, established by General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, who used this particular area for grazing cattle and basalt extraction. In 1934, the Montini family acquired the property from the heirs of General Vallejo, and generations of the Montini family continued grazing cattle on the property until it was purchased and protected by Ag + Open Space. 

Along with our partners at Sonoma Ecology Center we host free public outings on the preserve, and it continues to provide opportunities for Sonoma County residents and visitors alike to connect with and learn from nature.

If you want to learn more about the natural, historic, and cultural resources offered by the preserve, please see: