Coming together as a community to protect our natural resources and respond to crises is part of the culture in the Wimberley Valley. From protecting our water to educating people about the importance of conservation and stewardship, WVWA has and will continue to play a key role in these efforts.

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WVWA Board Votes to Join TESPA to Contest EP Permit

Trinity Edwards Springs Protection Association (TESPA) has decided to protest EP's permit because TESPA believes that Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer Conservation District's (BSEACD's) recommendation does not protect the property rights of landowners near EP's well field whose groundwater will be drained by EP's pumping. Despite the phased production volumes and pumping curtailment requirements, significant drawdown will still occur. Both the courts and the Legislature have held that landowners own their groundwater in place. EP will be pumping other landowner's groundwater and selling it for a profit. This should not stand.

As a member of TESPA, WVWA has joined the contested case against BSEACD's proposed permit. We are deeply concerned about the possible impacts on area surface water resources like Jacob's Well Spring and Cypress Creek. Read the comments WVWA submitted to BSEACD here.

Want to support TESPA and have some fun. The Groundwater Legal Defense Hill Country Jamboree will take place on July 22nd. More details here.

Video: Our Water Rights Ground Zero – Hector Flores Jr.

This video is a first in a series of personal stories about the potential impacts of Electro Purification's plan to pump 2.5 million gallons per day from the Middle Trinity aquifer. Wimberley Valley residents near the well field, like Hector, now face the very real possibility that their wells will go dry within one year after EP begins pumping. Click the image to view the video.

Eagle Scout Kiosk Project at Preserve Pocket Park Nears Completion

WVWA was granted a Community Achievement Award of $2,000 from Keep Wimberley Beautiful for the construction of a kiosk, which will eventually feature new signage and educational materials to inform visitors about the value of the Nature Preserve. Liam McLemore took the project on as an Eagle Scout project and has recently completed construction. Liam's interest in birds led him to propose a four-sided kiosk built around a chimney swift tower. Liam was inspired to use the kiosk opportunity to provide habitat for chimney swifts because as more and more people cap their chimneys, they’re losing habitat. The tower will provide an additional opportunity to learn about the importance of wildlife stewardship.

Liam worked with Parks Director Rebecca Manning to develop the plans, presented to the Parks Board and to the City Council, coordinated 6 work days, and led the activities at each one. Unique to his project is that some of the work days included only Scouts. Adults and youth contributed almost 200 hours of work over 6 work days. The building materials and stain were chosen to match the pocket park pavilion. The final product is beautiful and functional. We'd like to thank Liam, all of his volunteers, and Keep Wimberley Beautiful for bringing this important improvement to fruition!

June 2018 Groundwater to the Gulf Summit

Groundwater to the Gulf (G2G) is a field-trip based, summer institute for Central Texas teachers that emphasizes classroom techniques and resources on water science and rivers. Participants follow the path of water in Central Texas from its origins to its destination in the Gulf of Mexico. Topics include hydrology, groundwater, urban watersheds, water quality, river stewardship, water protection, and water conservation. Attendees experience hands-on field trips with local water experts; receive FREE curricula, TEKS-aligned activities, and resources; learn about field-trip opportunities for the school year; and receive 22 continuing education credits.

Activities in June 2018 included a karst tour and mini-caving trip at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center, a behind-the-scenes tour of the Splash! Exhibit at Barton Springs, Eliza Spring, a demo on harvesting rainwater and planning a successful campus cleanup, a tour of the Wilkerson Center for Colorado River Education, and a day of paddling and water activities on Lady Bird Lake. WVWA is proud to be among the sponsors of this program.

Jacob's Well Community Garden Is Growing Wimberley Strong!

We had a pleasant visit with the Community Gardeners last week. Dave Boyd explained that the tomatoes and zucchini will come out soon as temperatures are getting too hot for fruit to set. Many of the gardeners have planted beans and peas to return nitrogen to the soil. Most of the beds are planted with flowers among vegetables and herbs to attract pollinators including bees and butterflies, like the butterfly shown here enjoying the zinnias.  

Each garden plot has its own style that reflects the personalities and preferences of the gardeners. Shiila Safer’s garden is an experiment with combining vegetable, mineral, and animal, elements of the natural community it takes to grow healthy food. She's pictured on the left using rainwater and shade cloth to keep her basil and tomatoes going a bit longer. The group has cleared the area formerly used to store compost to make room for three new beds. The garden has been providing 30-40 lbs every week to Crisis Bread Basket and will be able to donate even more produce with one of the new beds dedicated to the grassroots community endeavor. The generous gardeners also shared some of their bounty with us!

Photo of the night sky at Jacob's Well by Matt Smith:  http://bigtexstudios.com/
https://www.instagram.com/Hyper.n0va/

Congratulations! Wimberley Valley Designated the Third International Dark Sky Community in Texas

In recognition of noteworthy local efforts to reduce light pollution and promote the benefits of nighttime darkness, the International Dark-Sky Association designated the Wimberley Valley of Texas as an International Dark Sky Community. The valley joins Dripping Springs and Horeshoe Bay as the three communities to receive this designation. Dark skies aren't just about aesthetics and being able to see the stars.

Artificial light can have damaging effects on wildlife and ecosystems, especially nocturnal creatures, birds, and sea turtles. You can watch KXAN's coverage here.

Plateau Land & Wildlife Management Summer Webinars

Plateau is offering a series of webinars for landowners this summer. Topics include managing land for pollinators, feral hog management, liability and risk management, wildlife management tools, native plant identification, and landowner incentive programs. 

Find out more and register here...

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Wimberley Valley Watershed Association
PO Box 2534
Wimberley, Texas 78676
512-722-3390
admin@wimberleywatershed.org

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