We took a hiking and driving tour yesterday in Montague and Cooke counties. Today’s post will be the hiking part on the Garnett Preserve. This is now owned and managed by the Thomsen Foundation. Always a delight to visit this wonderful preserve with 469 species of plants. 

The Redbuds are just spectacular! This is a view looking down from the mesa to the neighbor’s property next to the Garnett Preserve. They seem to be fuller and a deeper red this year. I wonder if our cold weather helped with this. Both Jeanne and I agreed that this year is the best we have seen. So if you haven’t gone for a drive to look at the Redbuds, don’t delay!
Remember how I told you about the Cymopterus (Vesper macrorhizus) having such pretty seed heads?
This photo is a plant from March 2nd post.

Here is the seed head! This the part that Shirley enjoyed most about the plant!

They have four or five fins on them. 
This was cool, a purple colored seed head!

I don’t know if it comes from the lavender flowered one.

Its stem at the base was pretty too!

Wild Onions (Allium drummondii) blooming!
FOS of the Prairie Verbena (Glandularia bipinnatifida) for me.

Prickly Pear cactus!

Ground-plum (Astragalus crassicarpus).

Indian Paintbrushes (Castilleja indivisa). Only a few were blooming on the preserve. But on our drive to Decatur this morning along Hwy 51, the paintbrushes are starting to pop as are several flower species! What a difference a day can make.

Small deer antler.

Bladderpod (Physaria engelmannii). The flowers are not quite open yet.

The grape leaf and bud was so pretty!

Many years ago when Hugh brought this property, he planted a Texas Buckeye (Aesculus glabra var arguta).

The color is vibrant on the new growth!
The buds are stunning!

This piece of land has a lot of limestone. Right in the middle of the rock is a small fossil.

Some how a peach tree has volunteered along the side of road in front of the preserve.
These were the highlights of the Garnett Preserve. Tomorrow I will post the Cooke County photos.

Keep looking!


  1. My TX Buckeye survived the freeze in the pot! I am so excited. It has quite a few buds this year.
    This has been a banner year for Verbena. It is everywhere!!! Tons of it. Bluebonnets are almost non existent in our wildflower area. Tiny plants that just sit there. The ones in the orchard under trees get some watering so they are gorgeous.
    I miss those redbuds. Instead of redbuds we have lots of mexican buckeyes but the redbuds are much brighter.

  2. Kathy, Interesting about your bluebonnets because they were blooming in Decatur along 380. Aren't the Mex Buckeyes shorter generally? Seems the ones I see are.

  3. I think y'all had a little more fall rain than we did.
    Mexican buckeyes are generally shorter and more bushy. Except for the one at the corner of this farmhouse. Its roots grew through the clay sewer pipe and got lots of fertilizer and water. It was huge. Maybe 10 ft tall.
    but then my Carrollton redbud was much bigger than in the wild and had to have Carol Feldman come see it to believe me. It was not in a sewer line but got watered. So I believe if you take the MB and water it regularly like a person with a lawn would, it would get quite big, especially on blackland prairie soil.

  4. Kathy, Thanks for sharing about the Mex Buckeyes. They are quite beautiful in the wild so bigger and better if you water. It is amazing how some plants respond to regular water LOL.

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