Hillsborough is home to numerous parks and nature trails, operated by both the township and the Somerset County Park Commission, including; Ann Van Middlesworth Park, Mountain View Park, Woodfield Park, Sunnymeade Run Playground, Doyle Park – Mike Merdinger Memorial Trail, Sourland Mountain Preserve, and Sourland Mountain Hiking Trail.
Duke Farms is an estate that was established by James Buchanan Duke, an American entrepreneur who founded Duke Power and the American Tobacco Company. The property is managed by the Doris Duke Foundation after the death of Doris Duke, the second owner. After extensive reorganization “Duke Farms” was opened to the public on May 19, 2012. Duke Farms is owned by the Duke Farms Foundation (DFF) that was established in 1998 to manage the estate. The Foundation, in turn, is part of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
Despite some controversy for when the commission made the decision to permanently close Duke Gardens, demolishing the indoor display gardens that had been created by Doris Duke, the commission has made strides in contributing to renovating the property for the 21st century. The DFF over the years have created new indoor and outdoor display gardens that are eco-friendly, use native plants, and are wheelchair accessible. In the process of rehabilitation numerous invasive foreign plants were removed including Norwegian maple and Asian Ailanthus and replaced by native species. On May 19, 2012, Duke Farms opened to the public. After a $45-million renovation, Duke Farms now include 30 endangered species and 230 varieties of birds, among which are the great blue heron and the bald eagle. As part of the rehabilitation the conservatory and greenhouses known as the Orchid Range were renovated and became more energy-efficient.