Original Prairie Plants Being Restored At San Jacinto Monument

Mealy Blue Sage (Salvia farinacea) and Englemann Daisy (Engelmannia peristenia) among Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii). Image from http://texasprairie.org/
The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is restoring 110 acres of tall-grass prairie at the San Jacinto Battleground. That will help the historic site retain the same tall grasses that were there during the Texas Revolution.

Much of the seed needed to reestablish the original prairie around the monument is being harvested from area parks and from the University of Houston's Galveston County coastal property. Bill Neiman is the founder of Native American Seed Company in Junction, Texas, which is gathering seed for the restoration.

"We conduct harvests on these original prairies and try and salvage the seeds then the genetic information that is stored in those seeds and then return them back into the hands of people that want to rebuild Texas."

Very few areas of Texas retain native prairie because of farming, overgrazing and development. Neiman says there are about 350 species that make up the coastal prairie.

"Well, there's little bluestem, blue mist flower, maximilian fun flower, gayfeather — the list is pretty extensive."

The results of the re-seeding should be apparent fairly soon.

"Well, we're hoping to process the seeds in our seed-cleaning plant here at Junction over the next several weeks. And if the weather remains as dry as it has been, we intend to get the planting taken care of during the late winter. It won't take much, once we get some good rains on it. Those seeds know exactly how to live right here, without any extra care."

The same tall grasses helped hide the Texian army as it approached Santa Ana's encampment during the Texas Revolution.

Bio photo of Ed Mayberry

Ed Mayberry

Local Anchor, All Things Considered

Ed Mayberry has worked in radio since 1971, with many of those years spent on the rock 'n' roll disc jockey side of the business...