Bird and Bee Farm is a Conservation Partner in the Pastures for Upland Birds Program. Over the past 150 years, agricultural land has taken over our native prairies. Bird and Bee Farm with the assistance of our new partners are replanting our 100 acre farm to return it to Original Native Prairie-Post Oak Savannah Habitat.
By establishing native tall-grass and native forb vegetation Bird and Bee Farm will provide an Ecosystem and Habitat for many forms of wildlife including; Eastern Meadowlark, Northern Harrier, Le Conte's Sparrow, Short-eared Owl, Dickcissel, Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, Mourning Dove, Bobwhite, Wild Turkey, and others. This same habitat will support the Bees, Butterflies (we are on the Monarch Butterfly Migration Path) and other pollinators we so badly need to protect.
Customers of Bird and Bee Farm are supporting this endeavor
Check out this great video
Learn more about Bird and Bee Farm in this one hour interview with Proprietor of Bird and Bee Farm Gene Rek and Master Naturalist Catherine Johnson.
For over 40 years Bermuda grass was grown and harvested on the 100 acre property to feed the Dairy Cows at the Rek Family Dairy Farm and a Poultry Barn served the Farm by raising started pullets for egg production.
Preparing to plant included burning the property so the ground could be tilled and leveled to plant the 9 native grasses and 30 native wildflower seeds provided by Texas Parks and Wildlife.
Extra care had to be taken around Bird and Bee Farm's Bee Apiary. The process went smoothly with no negative impact to our Bee Population!
Due to years of Wild Hog Damage and erosion the land needed to be plowed so it could be leveled.
Once plowed the Grading Process could begin so the land could be leveled and made ready to plant.
The seeds and the use of a no till drill were provided by Texas Parks and Wildlife. The Prairie was planted and then the wait began!
Catherine is the garden's fearless leader. She has applied for and received grants, numerous certifications and created approved volunteer opportunities. She has cataloged, propagated, purchased or otherwise acquired all the gardens plants. Additionally she has organized and hosted numerous community events in the garden.
The 10,000 square foot area for the "Gargantuan Butterfly Garden" needed to be terraced to prevent erosion and to create the ultimate planting opportunities. The Farm's old grain bin was disassembled and used to create different levels and planting opportunities. Old Farm Equipment and tin was also incorporated.
Retaining Walls were made out of old barn tin. Used pipe staked the tin into the ground. The Rings from the Old Grain Bin were also utilized to break up the wall and add dimension to the garden. Soil was brought in to back fill the retaining wall and it was all supplemented with chicken litter from the barn.
Holes were jack-hammered out of the concrete used for the grain bin to make a Gazebo out of the top. Concrete holds the wood supports in place. The old grain bin ladder was used as a trellis to let vines grow up on.
Holes for fence posts were drilled and fence posts concreted into the ground. Beautiful Vinyl Coated Poultry Netting to enclose the Garden was donated by Derwood and Louise Mynar. The poultry wire was stretched and two gates were installed.
Innovative materials were used to create pathways through the garden. Catherine is a True Master Naturalist, she reached out to our community for donated pavers, concrete edging and any materials she could reuse to divide the flowerbeds. Repurposed rain gutters surround the Southwest Garden.
Bird and Bee Farm is a 100 acre conservation project which is returning to its natural setting as a post oak savanna prairie that supports native plants and wildlife including upland birds and pollinators. We strive to be self sustaining by producing poultry for urban and rural customers, bees for honey and naturally fed livestock. Bird and Bee Farm offers a clean modern all weather facility to visit and purchase young healthy poultry that are fairly priced. To support the project our customers can purchase Started Pullets, Guinea Fowl and Native Rio Grande Wild Turkeys for their enjoyment, for healthy sustainable living and as a learning project for their children.
Our customers humble us by referring friends and family and by return visits to the Farm. We value each and every one of you and consider you all friends! Many travel long distances to see us. THANK YOU for the blessing of your business.