Land Conservation and Stewardship

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Land Conservation and Stewardship

The Hill Country is blessed with a rich natural heritage. For many landowners, land is much more than a financial asset; it is their legacy and their family history. Unfortunately, passing on the family farm or ranch, once a time-honored Texas tradition, is becoming more difficult in the face of rising costs and the pressures of encroaching development.

The role of private landowners in the Hill Country could not be more important. Especially within the context of Texas’s longstanding tradition of robust private property rights, the decisions made by each Hill Country landowner affect the future of the entire region and the legacy we will all leave to our children and grandchildren. Many landowners want to preserve their land’s unique natural features and historical uses. This page provides information and resources for you. Also see HCA’s page on the economics of land conservation here.

Download HCA’s issue paper “Conservation Easements and Working with Land Trusts”

Hillside Stewardship

Effective hillside stewardship balances healthy plant communities and soils with the landowner’s goals for long-term land management. When landowners can slow and sink water into the land, this physical process provides a variety of benefits, including reduced erosion, increased soil moisture and grass production, flood mitigation, groundwater replenishment, habitat enhancement, and increasing the flow of spring-fed creeks. Used in concert with long-term management, these site-specific structures can be quite effective. This guide provides a few simple methods and additional resources for landowners looking to improve our stewardship of hillside land across the Hill Country.

Download HCA’s resource “Hillside Stewardship: Reducing Erosion, Establishing Vegetation & Enhancing Water Catchment”

Recent Land Stewardship and Conservation News

A look to the future of Texas State Parks

Andrew Sansom got his first job in 1959 as a lifeguard at Lake Jackson Municipal Pool in his hometown about 55 miles south of Houston. Little did the 14-year-old know the job would set the stage for a lifelong career in parks administration and environmental...

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Ranchers raising birds to boost biodiversity

If you step outside into the morning sun but don’t hear birds singing, you may have a problem. “Birds are a leading indicator of what’s happening in your ecosystem,” says Chad Lemke, a Texas rancher who took over his family’s operation in the early 2000s with his...

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