the show

Native Plant Rescue + Urban Pocket Prairie

air date: October 21, 2023

Visit John Hart Asher’s pocket prairie restoration near downtown Austin, where successional planting benefits wildlife and conserves water. Meet Texas Master Naturalist Ashley Landry, co-founder of The Native Plant Rescue Project. In a collaboration of the Good Water Master Naturalists and Native Plant Society–Williamson County–volunteers rescue native plants and seeds from construction sites. Get pro tips for fall maintenance with Marissa Kinsaul, Grounds Manager, Austin Community College. Daphne identifies fasciation on wildflowers, an odd development of malformed tissue on flowers, leaves, or stems.


Episode Segments

On Tour

Transition to Urban Native Plant Pocket Prairie

In an old Austin neighborhood, environmental designer John Hart Asher worked with the new homeowner to restore the property’s prairie roots. Discover his process to rid weeds and Bermuda grass and establish a succession of reseeding annual wildflowers, perennials, and native clumping grasses for wildlife habitat and water conservation.

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Question of the Week

What’s going on with this clasping coneflower?

This odd development is an area of malformed tissue known as fasciation. Most often found in the tips of stems, leaves, and flowers, fasciation occurs at the site of cell division. It’s not contagious, and is usually only found on one area of an individual plant. Re-occurrence the following year is also rare, and, ultimately, this is not an issue to worry about. We still aren’t sure exactly what causes fasciation, although the current consensus is that there are multiple causes, including both bacterial and viral infections, damage from insect feeding, spontaneous genetic mutation, and environmental anomalies, like frost or herbicide damage.

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Backyard Basics

Fall Tools & Tasks: Marissa Kinsaul

Don’t believe it when someone touts a “no maintenance” garden! Make fall garden chores easier with pro tips for garden tasks and tools with Marissa Kinsaul, Grounds Manager at Austin Community College.

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