This Month at Shaw Nature Reserve
Glades in Bloom

As June begins so does the transformation of Shaw Nature Reserve’s dolomite glades. These rocky typically southwestern facing slopes look dry and barren during the winter, but come alive with purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), red hues of Indian paintbrush (Castilleja coccinea), and yellow hues of evening primrose (Oenothera macrocarpa) during the spring. Just east of the Trail House is an area known as ‘spring glade’ because of the abundance of blooms in late May to early June. Make sure to walk past it as you venture towards the Prairie Observation Platform or over to Barn Road. (Download a map.)

Since the Nature Reserve’s glades are surrounded by woodlands you can enjoy some shade while hiking. Take the River Trail from the Maritz Trail House to enjoy a mostly-shaded and downhill hike that will take you past the glade overlook where there is a bench, telescope, and shelter.

Many unique animals call the glades home such as the painted bunting (Passerina ciris), invertebrates, and further south you will see the greater roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus). Animals must be adapted to survive in a hot, dry, shallow soil, and open environment to thrive here. You are sure to see fence lizards (Sceloporus consobrinus) on the glade boardwalk which is a short walk south of the Maritz Trail House.

This boardwalk was built with Eastern red cedar from the Nature Reserve. The cedars were removed because they were taking over the glades and the boardwalk creates a way to get a closer view of the glade without damaging this somewhat fragile environment.

Remember that Trail House Loop Road is now open every day, so you can drive to the Trail House and enjoy the beauty of the glade without having to hike such a long distance.


Featured Events

Saturdays in June
WildFlower Concert Series

Friday, June 29
Native Plant Tea


Coming Soon

Friday, July 13 or 27
Shaw Family Adventures: Wilderness Wagon Ride

Thursday, August 9
Native Plant School: Pondscaping with Native Plants