This Saturday, Sept. 8, from 9 a.m. to noon on the patio at FRESH by Brookshires,’ join the Tyler Chapter of the Native Society of Texas, for the kick off of the Keep America Beautiful initiative. This event is to encourage homeowners to plant native plants.

Being from three generations of rose growers and landscapers, this is an event dear to my heart. Some of my favorite native plants to East Texas is the beautiful azalea. My father at one time was the largest wholesale grower of the native plant! Every year, during the Azalea trails in Tyler, I drive through the trails and are still amazed by the beauty!

You'll get information on the use of native and naturalized plants, tips on how to reduce water consumption in landscapes and a special presentation by Kay Jenkins with the NPSOT. There will be a chance to ask specific questions on using native plants, how to plant and care for them and other helpful tips for creating low water and low maintenance landscapes.

“We have so much natural beauty in East Texas that it just makes good sense to include native plants in our landscapes,” Keep Tyler Beautiful Board Chair Phyllis Carlyle said. “We want to show area residents that they don’t have to use so much water or work so hard to maintain a beautiful landscape when they use native plants instead of non-native, high maintenance plants.”

Carlyle also pointed out that the City of Tyler itself is a good example of how water efficient planning and native and naturalized plants enhance many public areas of the city. The recently opened Earl Campbell Parkway uses a state-of-the art watering system to sustain many drought tolerant roses and trees planted in the median.

The Get Growing initiative is a national effort to encourage homeowners to learn more about using low water and low maintenance native and naturalized plants in their landscaping in an effort to conserve water and other natural resources. More information about the national effort can be found at get