The City of Fort Worth formally dedicated the Monarch waystation at the Forest Park Pool on May 20.
North Central Chapter President Kim Conrow wrote last August about how the waystation got started. Kim suggested native plant landscaping to city officials after she and her husband Ray visited the pool. The city readily accepted and soon it became a chapter project. Kim created a landscape plan with the help of chapter member Dawn Hancock.
Joining in to help with installation were Boy Scout Troop 554, Cross Timbers Master Naturalists, Fort Worth Pollinator Ambassadors, Greater Fort Worth Sierra Club, Master Gardeners of Tarrant County, Native Prairie Association of Texas, and Crowley High School ROTC. Plantings were completed by the end of August. The Paschal High School Art Department created public art for the garden and the City of Fort Worth provided the educational signs which are guaranteed to last ten years. Plans are for the crew of lifeguards to tend the garden during the summer.
Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price is one of many Texas mayors who have signed the Mayor’s Monarch Pledge.
The new garden was formally dedicated with speeches and a ribbon cutting ceremony. The North Central Chapter provided refreshments and a crafts demonstration. Teacher Cavan Crane and Principal Dr. Theresa Mossige unveiled public art created by the visual art students at Paschal High School.
People sometimes ask why the Native Plant Society has become so concerned with Monarch butterflies. Monarchs and other insects evolved together with native plants, and their survival is linked with the conservation of native plants. Monarch Waystations are a way to reach out to the public and provide education about the relationship between plants and insects. Waystations show people what native plants look like and how they can be used in residential landscapes and public places.
Everyone who enters the Forest Park Pool will pass through this garden and see the signs. For many years to come it will be enjoyed by swimmers as well as the Monarchs.