Welcome to Turnipseed Nature Preserve... where the rocks and sands collide!

... explore unique habitats

… enjoy a picnic at provided tables

… fish along creek and beaver ponds

Turnipseed Nature Preserve, 265 acres located south of Wendell near the Johnston County line, offers nature exploration through wetlands and past granite rock outcroppings. Turnipseed is designated as a WakeNature Preserve for its ecological and geological significance.

The Marks Creek watershed was named a “Last Chance Landscape” by Scenic America and has been recognized as an ecologically significant area by the N.C. Natural Heritage Program. In response to rapid development, Wake County partnered with several nonprofits to protect the natural, historic and agricultural lands in this 50,000 acre watershed. Turnipseed Nature Preserve, at 265 acres, is a part of this larger conservation area and opened to the public in 2017. Future projects include additional trails, interpretative displays about the history and the wildlife of the preserve.


Where did the name Turnipseed come from?
The name for the preserve came from Turnipseed Road, which runs along the south side of the preserve. The road was previously known as the Wendell-Raleigh Road and the Burned Mill Road. In the 1960s, the road was straightened and the Turnipseed family sold a small parcel of their land for this road, which was then named Turnipseed Road.

If you have pictures or information about the history or the wildlife, please contact us at naturepreserve@wakegov.com.

Preserve Hours and Location

PEAK SEASON summer hours from Mother’s Day until the first weekend of August:

Monday–Sunday, 8 a.m.–sunset


OFF-PEAK SEASON winter hours from first weekend in August until Mother’s Day:

Saturdays and Sundays, 8 a.m.–sunset


Preserve is also open on the following holidays:

Memorial Day, 4th of July/Independence Day and Labor Day


Hunt Valley Trail entrance: 7100 Hunt Valley Trail, Wendell

Pleasants Road entrance: 1525 Pleasants Road, Wendell