The Lost Pines chapter serves primarily Bastrop and Caldwell counties of Central Texas (click here to find a statewide list of chapters). These counties are predominantly in the Post Oak Savannah and Blackland Prairie Ecoregions. In addition, our area includes the unique “island forest” of the Lost Pines, the westernmost extent of the loblolly pine (Pinus taeda), separated by about 100 miles from the pine forests of East Texas. Species in the Lost Pines are particularly adapted to the drier conditions here, and provide unique habitat for varied flora and fauna that can be seen in Bastrop and Buescher state parks and other nearby natural areas. You can learn more about what makes these parks so special and see pictures of them by visiting our “State Parks & Natural Areas” page; you can also find many links to information about the native plants, animals and ecology of the Lost Pines region on our resources page.
- Back Roads Nature–Huntsville State ParkA young American grew up among the Cherokee in Tennessee and later married a Cherokee woman. Imposing by character and courage, he was respected by all who knew him—the Cherokee gave him the name “Coleneh,” which means “raven”. An ambitious Sam Houston would later move to Texas and father a new republic. In his storied… Read More →
- The Life of SlimeWhat is the speed of dark? How much deeper would the oceans be if there were no sponges? How do you know when you’re out of invisible ink? Just when I feel like most of life’s mysteries have been solved, I realize my naivety. Take, for example, the life of a slime mold. Remember that… Read More →
- Mighty MesquiteAs I sit gazing around the room, my eyes are drawn to the rich, dark whorls of the mesquite mantle. Capping an immense fireplace, it’s the focus of the room—the highlight. Polished and dense, a once mighty trunk now adorns this simple cabin like an altar to strength and beauty. The rain outside tapping against… Read More →
- Back Roads Nature–Atlanta State ParkPine forests speak to me. Straight and true, they tower overhead—emissaries from the realm of angels. Walking among them is restorative, like being with old friends. They are listening, they are right with me, baring their secrets, their souls. Solidly rooted in the earth while searching the heavens, they have much wisdom to offer; and… Read More →
- The Fault is in Our StarsIt had been a full day. After returning to our RV and finishing supper, I retired to a comfortable chair outdoors with my whiskey and coke. Thunderheads were building in the distance. It was sundown and a bank of clouds to the west flared red. As daylight faded, the sky fluttered with lightening; far off,… Read More →
- Squatter’s ParadiseA child sits amused by the activity of an ant colony. Fireflies, too, are an innocent childhood amazement—wonders of nature. Tiny worlds, big questions. Could it be, in the big picture, we are no more special than the ants or fireflies? Are we not, ourselves, the product of evolution and natural selection? Since Darwin exposed… Read More →