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Spread the Word about Invasive Plants

Here are some ideas for spreading the word about invasive plants and their native replacements

Invasive Plant Rack Cards

This rack card is meant to offer chapters, the NICE program, and other groups a way to easily create local, ecoregion-specific information to spread the word about invasive plants and their native alternatives.

Each card includes one invasive plant on the front and up to three native alternatives for that plant on the back. To learn more about the native alternatives, each plant has the QR code to its entry in NPSOT’s native plant database.

Take a look at the sample cards below. These cards can be printed and left at nurseries or other suitable locations. Don’t want to use paper? Upload the PDFs of the completed rack cards to your chapter’s website to share via Facebook, email, and any other digital method you can think of.

This rack card template was created with the free version of Canva, an easy to use graphics design website.

The template design:

  • Front page – picture and information about an invasive plant QR code links to the invasive plant’s information in our invasive plant database.
  • Back page – pictures of up to 3 native alternatives. Each one has a QR code that goes to that plant in our native database.

Learn how to create your own cards:

 

Questions? Email invasives.plant.team@npsot.org

Guadalupe Chapter Brochures

These brochures about invasive plants are from the Guadalupe Chapter and Nancy Masterson. They use terms such as “exotics”, but can be adapted to your preferences. These ideas can also be adjusted to your local plants or conditions. They were economically printed on VistaPrint and placed at nurseries. The chapter is active in the NICE program and lists their local participating nurseries, including some that handed out the cards.

Tri-fold or 3 column invasives brochure from 2015 by the Guadalupe and Lindheimer chapters

A foldable wallet card showing invasives and their native replacements

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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