Workshop and Work Day: How to Collect Native Prairie Seeds

Workshop: How to Collect Native Prairie Seeds

by Randy Johnson, horticulture manager, Dallas Zoo & owner, Randy’s Organics (native plant nursery)

Saturday, November 19th

9 to 11 am – Boy Scout Hill

southwest corner of Mockingbird and Buckner
free


randy-johnsonWe will learn how to select the best seeds and which plants to focus on from Randy. Then we’ll collect on the Blackland NPAT work site on Boy Scout Hill at White Rock Lake. All seeds collected will be returned to City of Dallas Parks and Recreation for restoring other prairie sites around White Rock Lake.

Meet up at the small parking area and picnic structure at Boy Scout Hill. Easiest access is to take the turnoff for East Lawther off eastbound Mockingbird. From westbound, exit for East Lawther, take a left and then your first left at the stop sign

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Texas & Cajun Prairies Symposium – Apply Now

Learn. Connect. Be Empowered.

tx-cajun-prair-fotoAttached is the agenda for the Texas & Cajun Prairies Symposium. The idea is for Texas prairie enthusiasts to travel from Houston (tentatively from Rice University) by bus (where we have a chance to socialize and network with each other) to the USGS’ Wetland and Aquatic Research Center in Lafayette, La. There we will meet with prairie enthusiasts of the Cajun Prairie Habitat Preservation Society and have an afternoon of informative presentations (see agenda). Following that will be an evening Cajun Party and Fais-do-do!

Note on hotel rooms in Lafayette: there are rooms with 2 queen size beds, so cost can be shared. Cutoff date for getting the reduced conference room rate is September 3, 2016)

On Sunday, there will be a tours of the Eunice Cajun Prairie and the Duralde Prairie followed by lunch and the bus ride back to Houston.

Offer: members ( and new members) of Native Prairies Association of Texas from outside of Houston are invited to bring a sleeping bag and spend the night of Sept. 23 and/or Sept. 25 at the Deer Park Prairie house (there are some beds and lots of floor space; 1222 E. Purdue Lane 77536) or at Pat Merkord’s (Executive Director of NPAT) house in Conroe. Space limited. Reply to Lan.shen@txgcmn.org to reserve your space.

Attached are the agenda and the sponsorship letter that I have enclosed because the letter gives a good description of why we are doing this and has some great photos. Click link below to get PDF.

Agenda Texas and Cajun Prairies Symposium Agenda V2

Letter TX-LA Prairie Symp_Page_1

Should be fun! Sign up now!

tex-cajun-prairie-sm

Volunteers Needed for BPNAT Earth Day Booth 4/22-24

Earth Day This Weekend – Volunteers Needed! 

Friday – Sunday, April 22 – 24

Fair Park – Dallas, TX 

The Native Prairies Association of Texas is hosting a booth at Earth Day Texas this year on April 22-24 at Fair Park. The Dallas and Fort Worth chapters are looking for prairie enthusiasts to help us at the booth spread the word of prairie conservation.

Can you come help and enjoy this amazing event? It’s free to the public. Sign up here!

Admission is free, parking is not. We will let volunteers know where our booth is located before the event since it is a huge area.

The three-day Earth festival is held in April to celebrate progress, hope, and innovation. It is the largest event in the world of its kind. Earth Day Texas creates a fun and engaging atmosphere for thought and experiential learning while encouraging attendees to be the change they wish to see in the world.

Earth Day Texas brings together environmental organizations, businesses, academic institutions, government agencies, speakers, interactive programming, and subject matter experts along with live music and sustainable beer and food pavilions.

Explore and discover a whole new way to see the world with us.

Boy Scout Hill Workday – Saturday 4/16

Hands On the Prairie Day – this Saturday! 

Saturday, April 16th at 10 am

316 E. Lawther Dr Dallas, TX 75218 

Access from eastbound Mockingbird. Turn on East Lawther and take first left into hilltop parking lot by the picnic pavilion.

Boy Scout Hill — the prairie area at the southwest corner or Buckner and Mockingbird off East Lawther — was all the talk of the Blackland Chapter meeting last night. With less than a year of work, it is already looking much better, with less invasive Queen Anne’s lace and more native wildflowers. Have you ever wandered in, hunkered down, and viewed the lake through the prairie grass bending in the breeze? Truly magical! 

This is possibly the most visible native prairie remnant in Dallas County. Let’s make it magnificent! There’s quite a bit of Queen Anne’s lace left, so we must continue. It’s fun work with a view. Simply cut the tops off, or better yet cut the entire plant down. If you’re a true prairie maniac, dig those suckers up!

Bring hand tools, scissors or clippers, work gloves and plastic bags, plus sun gear (glasses, hat, sunscreen) and bug spray. 

Master Naturalists! This qualifies for required volunteer hours. 

Can’t make it? We’ll be there on Sun May 1st from noon to 2 pm. Mark your calendar! 

Need more details? Wondering what to do if it’s rainy? Or if you get lost that day? Call RJ at 214-274-3477.

Spring Events

Workshop Status

Thank you for all the RSVPs.  We have determined we have enough to hold the workshop.  If you haven’t RSVP’d, you are more than welcome to come.

On March 28th, Pat Merkord will be giving workshop on “Native Prairie Indicator Species: Signs Prairie Hunters Seek” at the Bath House Cultural Center at 10:00 am.

Find out what the top 10 indicator grass and wildflower species for Dallas area blackland prairies are and have hands on opportunities to identify selected grasses and forbs.
This workshop will help those interested in looking for prairies or those who want to learn more on how to identify prairie indicator species an opportunity to expand their prairie knowledge.

Schedule:
10-10:30 – Set up
10:30 to 11:30 – Introduction to top 10 Prairie Indicator Species for Blackland Prairies
(Includes tips on ID with actual specimens)
11:30 to 12:00 – Lunch – Please bring your own brown bag lunch on site
12:00 to 1:00 – More in-depth view of Prairie Indicator Species using nearby prairie site walk and field specimens
1:00 to 1:30 – Presentation Wrap-up on some North Texas Prairies


Texas Buckeye Trail Tour

Revison:  Tim Dalbey (& possibly Jim Flood) has graciously offered to take us on another field trip.  This time to view the blooming Buckeyes along the Texas Buckeye Trail.  They’ve offered to guide us Sunday, March 29 at 10am, weather permitting.

“The Texas Buckeye Trail is a natural surface nature trail that meanders into the Trinity River’s hardwood bottomland forest. Trail destinations include the River Overlook and the Buckeye Grove. Both paths will lead you to the river’s edge deep into the forest surrounded by mature Bur Oak, Cedar Elm and Pecan trees. This trail provides the hiker a true wild outdoor experience less than four miles from downtown Dallas!”

The Buckeye Trail can be found at the south end of Bexar Street: 7000 Bexar Street.  Park in the cul-de-sac  Bexar Street exits right of Hwy. 175 (road to Kaufman at the I-45 split) heading south to Houston after downtown if coming that way down Central.  Or, go south on Jim Miller like to the escarpment sites we visited, right on Bruton off Jim Miller, to Hwy 175 ramp onto Hwy. 175 going towards town and take Bexar exit and then turn left on Bexar and go to the end where there is a cul-de-sac and the trail head.  Jim Flood and Tim use to clear the trail and do plant inventories for the bottomland hardwood forest.  Jim has been doing a privet eradication project for his Master Naturalist hours.


No April meeting

Because of a lot of members will be at the Dallas City Councilman’s candidate forum at our regularly scheduled time and other associations meetings.  We will forgo April’s meeting as well.  But, we have other get together opportunities…


Earth Day in Oak Cliff – Call for Volunteers 

Oak Cliff Earth Day LOGO WITH TEXT

Oak Cliff Earth Day Blackland Chapter, NPAT Booth
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Lake Cliff Park, 1200 Zang Blvd., Dallas 75208

The Blackland Chapter, NPAT has reserved a booth, two chairs and one table at this year’s Oak Cliff Earth Day event.

Nine volunteers will be needed – see attachment.
Volunteers – wear a BLACK T-Shirt (our Blackland “uniform”) – you will have name tags.

The goal of the Blackland NPAT at this event is to share basic information about the Blackland Prairies in Texas and to raise awareness of NPAT and our local Blackland chapter:
1. Chapter awareness:
a. Share Blackland Chapter’s Facebook and website address…
b. Share Info on chapter meetings and future events…
c. Share info on the 13 counties under BNPAT’s umbrella…
2.  Share names, location, directions of known Blackland Prairie remnants…
3.  Share information on state organization, NPAT, their accomplishments, upcoming events, website address, etc…
3.  Prairie Importance:
a. Blackland Prairies ecological importance…
b. Blackland Prairies as a habitat…
4.  Beauty of the Blackland Prairies – Flora – show visuals…
5.  Collect names, and contact info from individuals who show interest in attending chapter meetings and events – add them to our mailing list…

This can be accomplished by:
1.  Talking
2.  Showing visuals (paper or electronic)
3.  Hands-on activities, etc. – bring your own knowledge to the booth and use your talents for sharing…

How to VOLUNTEER:
1. Please read attachments – be sure to review the volunteer rotation shift schedule – attachment page 2.

2. Once you have chosen your volunteer time, then plan a demo, or bring literature/visuals to aide in your sharing, or just show up and talk to the individuals who visit the Blackland Chapter Booth – be creative!

3. Finally e-mail, phone or text Kathleen Lynch with your chosen volunteer times – remember “the early bird gets his/her first choice”.  Her contact info can be found on the attachment.

Kathleen will answer any questions.  Refer to the attachment in the email sent 3-12-15.


Frankford Prairie Tour

On April 18 & 19th, Rosa Finsley and Kathy Powers will be giving tours of the never plowed, native Blackland Prairie at the Frankford Church and Cemetery.  Saturday, April 18th’s tour will be at 10am and Sunday, April 19th’s tour will be at 4pm.  Come to both to view both in different lighting conditions.  Best part of tour?  The wild hyacinth should be blooming!  More info to come.

Wild Hyacinth


Upcoming Events

For the month of March, we will have a workshop instead of meeting.  On March 28th, Pat Merkord will be giving workshop on “Native Prairie Indicator Species: Signs Prairie Hunters Seek” at the Bath House Cultural Center at 10:00 am.

Find out what the top 10 indicator grass and wildflower species for Dallas area blackland prairies are and have hands on opportunities to identify selected grasses and forbs.
This workshop will help those interested in looking for prairies or those who want to learn more on how to identify prairie indicator species an opportunity to expand their prairie knowledge.

Schedule:
10-10:30 – Set up
10:30 to 11:30 – Introduction to top 10 Prairie Indicator Species for Blackland Prairies
(Includes tips on ID with actual specimens)
11:30 to 12:00 – Lunch – Please bring your own brown bag lunch on site
12:00 to 1:00 – More in-depth view of Prairie Indicator Species using nearby prairie site walk and field specimens
1:00 to 1:30 – Presentation Wrap-up on some North Texas Prairies

2014-10-11 14.02.22

On April 12th, we will have a booth/table at Oak Cliff’s Earth Day event.
EarthCliffEarthDay

On Saturday, May 2, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., we will be celebrating Native Plants and Prairies Day hosted by the Texas Master Naturalists at the Bath House Cultural Center 521 E. Lawther Drive, Dallas.  The day will have more than 20 demonstration and information booths, wildflower and bug walks, lectures and more at White Rock Lake. For a video of last year’s celebration, click here.

Contact Leigh Ann if you’re interested in volunteering for Earth Day or Native Plants & Prairies Day.

Seed Collection this Sunday

“On Sunday, December 7, 1-4p.m., we have the opportunity to visit Bluestem Nursery and collect native grass seed for the various Master Naturalist habitat restoration projects. This is a unique opportunity to visit a wonderful property, learn lots from the “grass man”, John Snowden, and enjoy visiting with friends while standing waist-deep in beautiful fall grasses…and because all grass seed will be donated to chapter projects, this activity counts as volunteer hours. If you’d like to carpool from Dallas, plan on leaving at 12:15 and e-mail me, danawilson59 at yahoo dot com, 469-531-6856, – I’ll try to hook folks up. The nursery is at 4001 Curry Rd (SW Arlington). Bring paper bags for collecting (handled paper grocery bags are ideal); wear close-toe shoes and bring bottled water. We won’t meet if it’s wet or if rain is likely.  Hope to see you there!”