The meeting from 7–9 PM on Tuesday, August 19th, of the Austin chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will include a screening of the Emmy-Award-winning documentary “Green Fire: Aldo Leopold and a Land Ethic for our Time.” “Green Fire” explores the life and legacy of famed conservationist Aldo Leopold and the many ways his land ethic philosophy lives on in the work of people and organizations all over the country today. The film shares highlights from Leopold’s life and extraordinary career, explaining how he shaped conservation and the modern environmental movement. It also illustrates Leopold’s continuing influence, exploring current projects that connect people and land at the local level. The film lasts about an hour. As usual, we will also have a seed exchange.

The June 17th meeting will take place in the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There is parking in the garage, which also has an elevator. You can enter the garage from Greenlee; look for the signs leading you to the second-floor meeting room.

The meeting from 7–9 PM on June 17th of the Austin chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will include as its main presentation: Rare Prairies and How They are Being Saved.

Learn about the latest prairie acquisitions and partnerships by the Native Prairies Association of Texas, including the famous 4-million-dollar Deer Park Prairie, its incredible flor,a and how this platinum prairie was saved. Hear about other rare prairies that NPAT has protected such as Talbot Prairie, a rare Silveus Dropseed and Long Spike Tridens prairie. Find out about the latest efforts to protect threatened prairie dogs at our Maddin Prairie Preserve, NPAT’s plans for the future and its efforts to conserve, protect and restore more prairies and the rare plants they contain.

Presenter Pat Merkord has been with the Native Prairies Association of Texas since 2006 as Secretary and President of the Board and now as Executive Director. The Native Prairies Association of Texas is a non-profit land trust that conserves, restores and educates about Texas prairies. Pat is an Austin native with a master’s degree in biology from Texas State University. She was formerly a biology and chemistry teacher and then retired and started an environmental consulting business, Bluestem Environmental Consultants which has been operating since 2004. Pat now resides in Conroe, Texas with her husband Glenn and enjoys birding, gardening with natives and traveling around the state visiting with landowners and working to restore prairie habitats.

The June 17th meeting will take place at our new and more central location: the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There is parking in the garage, which also has an elevator. You can enter the garage from Greenlee; look for the signs leading you to the second-floor meeting room.

As usual, we will also have a seed exchange.

The meeting from 7–9 PM on May 20 of the Austin chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will include as its main presentation “Ancient People, Ancient Plants, Central Texas: Things We Know and How We Know Them ” by Dr. Leslie Bush. See our website for more details: http://npsot.org/wp/austin/2014/04/18/chapter-meeting-may-20-7-9-pm/

The May 20th meeting will take place at our new and more central location: the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There is parking in the garage, which also has an elevator. You can enter the garage from Greenlee; look for the signs leading you to the second-floor meeting room.

The Austin chapter of NPSOT will conduct a field trip to Bright Leaf Preserve on Saturday, May 3, led by Bright Leaf docent Bill Dodd.

Bright Leaf is a beautiful, unspoiled 216-acre nature preserve tucked away in the center of Austin, just south of RM 2222 and between Hwy 360 and Mopac.  The undeveloped land was acquired by Georgia Lucas in order to preserve it for future generations to appreciate and enjoy the natural features that it exhibits:  geology, plants (including the rare Bracted twistflower), birds (including the endangered Golden-cheeked warbler, who will be singing now), mammals, reptiles & amphibians, and countless species of the invertebrate world.  In the 1990′s it was put under the protection of TPWD management and is now owned by the Austin Community Foundation.  This private foundation is committed to maintaining the area and upholding the Lucas will.

Please contact Jackie Davis to register for this trip:
jackietexnat@gmail.com
512-292-6261

The meeting from 7–9 PM on May 20 of the Austin chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will include as its main presentation “Ancient People, Ancient Plants, Central Texas: Things We Know and How We Know Them.” The presenter, Dr. Leslie L. Bush, has this to say about the topic:

“The Central Texas plants we enjoy today have been used for food, medicine, and crafts for millennia by the Native people of Texas. Written accounts by Spanish missionaries and European explorers, Native oral traditions, and archeological investigations provide windows into the many fascinating uses of our Texas native plants.  I’ll discuss some of our more common plants — sumac, juniper,  switchgrass, prickly pear — as well as some very important but lesser-known plants such as little barley and camas.”

Leslie L. Bush is a paleoethnobotanist, an archeologist who specializes in identifying bits of plants preserved on archeological sites, usually in the form of charcoal. She received her Ph.D. from Indiana University in 2001, and her dissertation was published by the University of Alabama Press. She has worked on sites in thirteen states including Maryland, Florida, Iowa, Indiana, and of course Texas. Leslie is currently involved with excavations by the Arkansas Archeological Society in the Ouachita National Forest, Texas Archeological Society investigations near Columbus, and Texas State University’s Ancient Southwest Texas Project near Comstock. She once found a prickly pear seed on a 600-year-old site near Indianapolis.

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The May 20th meeting will take place at our new and more central location: the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There is parking in the garage, which also has an elevator. You can enter the garage from Greenlee; look for the signs leading you to the second-floor meeting room.

As usual, we will also have a seed exchange.

The meeting from 7–9 PM on April 15 of the Austin chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas will be a potluck and open forum with State NPSOT Chapter Liaison Dennis Perz. After a delicious potluck plan to stay and brainstorm ways to improve our chapter’s effectiveness.

The potluck supper will be at our new and more central location: the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There is parking and an elevator in the garage, which can be entered from Greenlee. Look for the signs leading you to the second-floor meeting room.

Given our new location at the church, we will not be serving alcoholic beverages, so bring something else good to eat or drink and share.

As usual, we will also have a seed exchange.

 

The March 18th chapter meeting will take place 7–9 PM in our new and more central location: the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There is parking and an elevator in the garage, which can be entered from Greenlee. Look for the signs leading you to the second-floor meeting room.

The topic for the March 18th meeting is The Four Seasons of Wildlife Gardening.
Guiding from spring through winter, Meredith O’Reilly will show you which native Texas plants are in bloom, producing seeds, or providing fruit, along with what’s happening simultaneously in the wildlife world. Along the way she will provide additional tips for creating an outstanding and ever-active wildlife garden that draws birds, pollinators, and other desired wildlife year-round.

An avid wildlife gardener, Meredith O’Reilly is also a National Wildlife Federation Habitat Steward Host, NPSOT member, Capital Area Master Naturalist, and Travis Audubon committee member. She greatly enjoys teaching and writing about native flora and fauna, as well as protecting the ecosystem through thoughtful gardening. She writes about her wildlife gardening experiences at her blog, Great Stems.

Doors open at 6:30 PM for socializing. Snacks will be provided. Nonmembers welcome; free admission.

Remember to bring:
(1) seeds to exchange and give away;
(2) mystery plants for identification.

For further information, contact Phyllis Schunck at (512) 472-2086 in Austin.

This field trip will take you behind the scenes at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center so you can learn more about the research involved in developing HABITURF™.   Discussions will be led by Wildflower Center staff and Stephen Scace, who gave a presentation on HABITURF™ for our January meeting. Stephen will also lead us on a hike to the new Arboretum area.

DATE:         Saturday, March 22, 2014.
TIME:          1:00 pm.
LOCATION:  Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in front of the cafe.

The February 18th chapter meeting will take place 7–9 PM in our new and more central location: the administration building of the Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. The administration building is on the southeast corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There’s parking and an elevator in the garage, which can be entered from Greenlee.

The topic for the meeting is “Post-wildfire Ecology and Restoration of Bastrop State Park” by Greg Creacy, who will present an overview of the challenges and considerations of restoring Bastrop State Park in the aftermath of the September 2011 Bastrop County Complex wildfire.

Greg Creacy obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Conservation at Southeast Oklahoma State University and a Master of Science degree in Biology at Sam Houston State University.  His thesis research involved ponderosa pine forest restoration to benefit wildlife in northern Arizona.  Greg worked as a wildlife technician and research assistant for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, Texas Research Institute for Environmental Studies and US Forest Service prior to employment with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD).  He has spent the past 17 years with TPWD managing and conserving natural resources on public and private lands within multiple ecoregions of Texas.  Greg currently works as a Natural Resources Coordinator for the State Parks Division of TPWD, where he coordinates natural resource monitoring, restoration, management and research for 17 state parks within central Texas.

Doors open at 6:30 PM for socializing. Snacks will be available then and after the presentation. Nonmembers welcome; free admission.

Remember to bring:
(1) seeds to exchange and give away;
(2) mystery plants for identification.

For further information, contact Phyllis Schunck at (512) 472-2086 in Austin.

The January 21st chapter meeting will include a presentation by Stephen Scace on the native grass mixture known as HABITURF™, developed by The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center for dry regions of Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona. HABITURF™ is a mix of Bouteloua dactyloides (buffalograss), Bouteloua gracilis (blue grama), Hilaria belangeri (curly-mesquite), and other native species. As a replication of nature’s shortgrass prairies, it requires less mowing, watering and weeding than domestic turfgrasses. Tuesday night’s presentation will show how to create a native lawn and will take a look at the science behind it.

Stephen Scace is a volunteer docent–and the son of a 20-year volunteer–at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, where he helps maintain trails and wild lands, assists with research projects, and guides tours. He is particularly interested in the Center’s work restoring and creating native ecosystems, and really likes native grasses.

Please note that this January 21st meeting will take place at the familiar time of 7–9 PM but in a new and more central location: Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX 78703. We will meet in the administration building just across Greenlee St. on the south side of the church campus at the corner of Greenlee and Exposition. There’s parking and an elevator in the garage off Greenlee.

Doors open at 6:30 PM for socializing. Snacks will be available then and after the presentation. Nonmembers welcome; free admission.

Remember to bring:
(1) seeds to exchange and give away;
(2) mystery plants for identification.

For further information, contact Phyllis Schunck at (512) 472-2086 in Austin.

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Stephen Scace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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