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CNC offers programs on gardening & birds


Programs offered by the Cibolo Nature Center & Farm during February will focus on bird studies and vegetable gardening. Anyone interested in participating is asked to register online at or call 830-249-4616 to learn more. Workshop participants will meet at the CNC auditorium unless otherwise noted.
Volunteer citizen scientists are needed to help monitor wild bird nest boxes on four habitats at the Cibolo Nature Center & Farm and at Boerne Lake. "Bird Box Monitor Training" will take place from 10 am to noon, Feb. 4 at the CNC.
Presenter Dick Park will teach monitors to identify birds that use the boxes based on nest structure and materials. Monitors also will learn to count and scientifically document egg and hatchling numbers, and predict hatch dates and fledge dates. A $10 donation is suggested.
Beginning vegetable gardeners are invited to join Keith Amelung, owner of Heirloom Tomatoes of Texas and Have Spade, Will Travel Landscape & Consulting, to examine every aspect of vegetable gardening during "Vegetable Gardening 101" from 9 am to noon Feb. 8.
Topics will include site selection, soil preparation and selecting the best varieties and seed sources for the garden. Cultivation from seed to harvest will be explored, as well as natural pest prevention and control. The workshop will conclude with a visit to the Inspiration Garden at the Herff Farm. It costs $25, $20 for CNC members.
Amelung also will conduct a crash course on growing America's favorite fruit during "Tomatoes, Tomatoes and More About Tomatoes!" from 6 pm to 8 pm Feb. 13. Participants will learn the how, when, where and why of choosing the right varieties and other important considerations for growing delicious tomatoes. The workshop costs $15.
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department biologist and land-management specialist Rufus Stephens will explore the behavior and habitat preferences of numerous bird species and describe land-management techniques that attract birds during "Attracting Birds: Creating Bird Habitats" from 9 am to noon Feb. 15.
The workshop will explain a systematic approach to management that increases bird species diversity through habitat enhancements. During a walk outdoors, Stephens will point out native plants that provide food and cover in the CNC's various habitats and native-plant gardens. Stephens currently is co-authoring the first book on the subject specific to the Hill Country. The workshop costs $25, $20 for CNC members.
Birder Dick Park, who also owns the Old Daley Ranch, has attracted more than 190 species of birds to his Hill Country home. He will discuss his techniques during "Attracting Birds: Feeders, Food, Water Features and Plants" from 9 am to noon, Feb. 22.
Park will demonstrate how he attracts nesting, migrating and wintering birds to his land through habitat enhancements, bird feeders, water features and nest boxes. Participants will meet at the CNC parking lot and carpool to the ranch. The workshop costs $25, $20 for CNC members.
The Cibolo Nature Center & Farm is located on 160 acres of natural lands at Boerne City Park off Highway 46, just west of the Kendall County Fairgrounds. For more information, call 830-249-4616 or visit