Native demonstration gardens
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NATIVE DEMONSTRATION GARDENS. Kathy Henderson, Williamson County Chapter Presented at NPSOT State Board Meeting - April 19, 2014. OBJECTIVES. What is a Native Demonstration Garden? Why have one? First project: Georgetown Library Second project: Williamson County Landfill Results achieved.

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NATIVE DEMONSTRATION GARDENS

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Native demonstration gardens

NATIVE DEMONSTRATION GARDENS

Kathy Henderson, Williamson County Chapter

Presented at NPSOT State Board Meeting - April 19, 2014


Objectives

OBJECTIVES

  • What is a Native Demonstration Garden?

  • Why have one?

  • First project: Georgetown Library

  • Second project: Williamson County Landfill

  • Results achieved


What is a demonstration garden

WHAT IS A DEMONSTRATION GARDEN?

  • A designed landscape containing natives and (optionally) well-adapted non-natives.

  • Located in a very public place

  • With a message to all:

    • Good aesthetics

    • Low water usage

    • Specialty purposes (butterflies, pollinators, etc.)

    • Importance of proper maintenance

    • “Native plants = healthy habitats”


Why have one

WHY HAVE ONE?

  • Texas is growing rapidly;

    • Habitat destruction continues

    • Our water supply is at risk

  • Demonstration gardens can impact policy makers and the public

  • We need to “get the word out” more efficiently

  • A public initiative with a lot of leverage


Georgetown library history

GEORGETOWN LIBRARY – HISTORY

  • Two demo gardens at old Georgetown Library

  • First tried a wildscape – not good

  • Second a managed garden - very successful

  • Chapter did all the maintenance

  • Library moved to new building

  • Maintenance handed to city and contractor with written instructions

  • Unsatisfactory results

Agnes Plutino

Agnes Plutino

Agnes Plutino


Georgetown library history ii

GEORGETOWN LIBRARY – HISTORY II

  • New library in 2008

  • Contract designer – African iris, Crepe Myrtle, “row crops”.

  • 2014 Water Reduction initiative by City – an opportunity

  • City asked for a new native landscape

  • Collaborative effort

    • City

    • NPSOT

    • Master Naturalists

  • Another chance to educate and influence

Diane Sherrill

Marilyn Perz

Marilyn Perz


Native demonstration gardens

Kathy Henderson

Marilyn Perz

Kathy Henderson

Kathy Henderson

Kathy Henderson


William s on county landfill entrance pollinator garden

WILLIAMSON COUNTY LANDFILL ENTRANCE – POLLINATOR GARDEN

  • Landfill owned by County

  • Operated by contractor

  • Started Gateway project

    • Hired landscape designer

    • Beach Vitex, Chinese Pistache, Crepe Myrtle, etc.

  • Operator asked Master Naturalists about a pollinator garden

  • NPSOT invited to collaborate

  • A chance to influence and educate

Marilyn Perz


Williamson county landfill entrance 2012

WILLIAMSON COUNTY LANDFILL ENTRANCE - 2012

  • Started by planting wildflower garden

  • Began education about non-natives, invasives, and habitats

  • Began suggesting alternatives

  • Butterflies and hummingbirds started arriving

Marilyn Perz


Williamson county landfill entrance 2013

WILLIAMSON COUNTY LANDFILL ENTRANCE - 2013

  • Wildflower garden growing

  • Permission to start replacing Vitex

  • NPSOT/Master Naturalist work sessions

  • Materials and “heavy lifting” furnished and paid for by landfill operator

  • Summer open house

    • Public

    • County commissioner

    • New Agri-Life agent

  • Growing cooperation and education

Marilyn Perz


Williamson county landfill entrance 2014

WILLIAMSON COUNTY LANDFILL ENTRANCE - 2014

  • Installed rainwater collection system

  • Obtained TP&WD Wildlife Habitat and Monarch Waystationcertifications

  • Landfill operator decided to remove balance of invasives

  • Replacing with appropriate natives

  • Continuing influence and collaboration

Marilyn Perz

Dennis Perz


So why do this

SO WHY DO THIS?

Gain Influence

Educate Broadly

Build Credibility

Demonstrate

  • Aesthetics

  • Drought tolerance

  • Reduced water usage

  • No invasives

  • Birds and butterflies

  • Healthy habitats

  • Design

  • Plant selection

  • Maintenance

    • Mulch/weed

    • Watering

    • Trimming by season

  • Collaborations

    • City/County

    • Master Naturalists

    • Others

  • Side-by-side comparisons

  • Proper maintenance

  • Natives the better choice

  • Teach “native competent” maintenance

  • Leverage our knowledge and experience


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