Quarterly Reports

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Project #2008
Restoration of Bahia Grande
Quarterly Reports

Eighth Quarterly Report (Oct, Nov, Dec 2004)
submitted by project leader Thor Lassen on Feb 24, 2005

During this quarter, we completed the construction of the greenhouse at UTB/TSC. The greenhouse has five rooms and a large outdoor area for grow out of propagated plants and grasses. We built thirty-eight growing tables to hold germinating native plants and grasses which were set up in four rooms (ten in three rooms and eight in one room). The plants and grasses in the tables are watered with a water distribution system collecting fresh water from the roof and powered by solar cells. One room is being used as a work, storage and educational area.

We collected seed, propagated and are growing the following native plant and grass species in the nursery: 6,000 black mangrove (Avicennia germinans), 1,000 Gulf cord grass (Spartina spartinae), 200 Coastal saltgrass (Distichlis spicata), 100 Shoregrass (Monanthochloe littoralis), and 45 Sea-ox-eye daisy (Borrichia frutescens).

Permanent signage identifying the building at the Bahia Grande Greenhouse was constructed both on the building and on a posted sign at the front of the building. Sponsors were recognized which included: NOAA Restoration Center, Gulf of Mexico Foundation, Marco Sales, Ocean Trust and UTB/TSC.

A greenhouse dedication was organized and held on December 7, 2020 with presentations given by Juliet V. Garcia, president of UTB/TSC; Thor Lassen, president Ocean Trust; John Wallace, manager Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge; Steve Labuda, former manager for Laguna Atascosa NWF; and Donna Eymard, intern director Port of Brownsville. Approximately, eighty guests were in attendance including Carrie Robertson from the Gulf of Mexico Foundation, Criselda Valdez Villarreal of The Brownsville Herald and representatives from Congressman Solomon Ortiz and Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison’s offices. After the dedication, guests were invited to join in the restoration process by planting a mangrove propagule in honor of the occasion. The event was photo-documented by Carrie Robertson and posted on the Gulf of Mexico website at http://gulfmex.org/crp2008a.html. The Brownsville Herald published a story about the dedication “Greenhouse to help with plant life, restoring Bahia” in its December 12, 2020 issue viewable online at: http://www.brownsvilleherald.com/print.php?id=62672_0_10-0.

During this quarter, we prepared progress reports for the Gulf of Mexico Foundation and received a time extension. We also began to work on the final aspects of the project which include propagation of 10,000 Big Sacaton seeds at Episcopal Day School for use in the restoration of Bahia Grande, planting of 2,000 Carolina wolfberry in Bahia Grande for bank stabilization, and construction of outdoor native plant and grass pens and ponds for grow out of maturing plants and grasses from the UTB nursery and for holding transplanted plants and grasses rescued from Bahia Grande channel construction sites and later used for soil stabilization in Bahia Grande.

March 5, 2021 - Seven new 8-foot by 16-foot ponds (above) were recently built outside of the Bahia Grande Greenhouse on the UT Brownsville campus to hold mangroves and native grasses harvested from the wild. The plants will be grown in the ponds until they are transplanted to Bahia Grande as part of the restoration project. On March 5, staff and volunteers from JASON Project collected a truckload of plants at the harvest site, then worked in the greenhouse potting the specimens. Plants harvested include mangroves, Distichlis and Monanthochloe grasses. Two of the ponds were lined with plastic, flooded and filled with plants (below). On March 12, all seven ponds were completed. Project leaders expect to fill all ponds and two new indoor tables with harvested plants before the canal is dug in April 2005.
                                                                  Photos by Elizabeth Heise

Ninth Quarterly Report (Jan, Feb, March 2005)
submitted by project leader Thor Lassen on June 30, 2021

During this last quarter, the outdoor plant and grass grow out ponds at the UTB greenhouse were constructed which was the final part to be completed in the greenhouse and were filled with species rescued from the channel construction sites. Photos have been sent to the Gulf of Mexico Foundation. We also have completed the planting of the Carolina wolfberry with the girl and boy scout troops from Brownsville, and planted 10,000 big sacaton seedlings in growing containers at Episcopal Day School for later use in the re-vegetation of Bahia Grande. These plants should be ready for planting this fall.

Gulf of Mexico Foundation - PMB 51, 5403 Everhart - Corpus Christi, TX 78411
(800) 884-4175 toll free - (361) 882-3939 phone - (361) 882-1262 fax
e-mail: info@gulfmex.org     website: gulfmex.org
webmaster: Carrie Robertson