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Guadalupe Chapter

Guadalupe NICE Nursery Partners

[ Natives Improve & Conserve Environments]

Texas is a large, diverse state, so plants that thrive in one region may not be the best choices elsewhere. And imported plants are never the answer: they require more care and water, and often our birds, bugs and butterflies don’t even recognize them as food. The Native Plant Society of Texas created Operation NICE to help gardeners find native plants that work best in specific environments.

Our NICE committee designs easy to maintain ornamental gardens that show off the beauty of our Texas native plants, and also attract and feed our wonderful native birds and butterflies.  Being indigenous to our immediate area, once planted, these gardens are a snap to maintain.  Our partner nurseries (listed below) try to maintain the plants in stock.

NICE promotes these gardens and the plants in them through this website, newspaper and magazine articles, signs and displays at points of sale, and through public speaking engagements. Check the ‘Garden Plans’ tab in this section to see the gardens the committee has designed so far.

NICE recommended plants may be found at:

Maldonado Garden Center – 3011 US Hwy 90 West, Seguin – 830- 372-3879
The Green Gate – 990 South SH 123, Seguin – 830-372-4060

Green Jay Gardens – 100 Elm Grove Rd and HWY 46, Seguin – 830-433-4040

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About the Region

New Braunfels, the location of our Fall 2024 Symposium, straddles both the Edwards Plateau Ecoregion and the Blackland Prairie ecoregion. Interstate 35 divides the city of New Braunfels; its path through the city closely parallels the boundary of these two ecoregions, with the Edwards Plateau on the west side and the Blackland Prairies region to the east. The Edwards Plateau area is also called the Hill Country; however, this general term covers a much larger area extending farther north. Spring-fed creeks are found throughout the region; deep limestone canyons, rivers, and lakes (reservoirs) are common. Ashe juniper is perhaps the most common woody species found throughout the region. Additional woody species include various species of oak, with live oak (Quercus fusiformis) being the most common. Sycamores (Platanus occidentalis) and bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) border waterways. This area is well known for its spring wildflower displays, though they may be viewed in spring, late summer, and fall, as well. According to Texas Parks and Wildlife, average annual rainfall in the Edwards Plateau ranges from 15 to 34 inches.

The Blackland Prairie extends from the Red River south to San Antonio, bordered on the west by the Edwards Plateau and the Cross Timbers, and on the east by the Post Oak Savannah. Annual rainfall averages 30 to 40 inches, with higher averages to the east. This region is dominated by prairie species. The most common grass species include little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) and Indian grass (Sorghastrum nutans) in the uplands and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) in the riparian areas and drainages. Common herbaceous flowering plants include salvias, penstemons, and silphiums. This area has suffered greatly from overgrazing and agricultural use. Few intact areas remain, though many of the plants can be found along county roadsides throughout the region.

Our four host chapters (New Braunfels, Lindheimer, Guadalupe, and the Hill Country chapters) are located in one or both of the ecoregions above. However, the eastern portion of Guadalupe County also falls within the Post Oak Savanna ecoregion. Annual rainfall averages 35 to 45 inches, with higher averages to the east. A wide variety of hardwood trees are found, including several species of oaks, elms, and in the Bastrop area, loblolly pine (Pinus taeda). Grasses and forbs dominate in the open savannas, with most common grass being little bluestem. Ranching, agriculture, and fire suppression have allowed woody species to encroach on the once-open savannas.

Source: Wildflowers of Texas by Michael Eason