Backyard Habitat Steward Program

Backyard Habitat Steward 2016 (jpeg)

Learn how to transform a part of your yard to a nature habitat patch that will bring endless beauty to your home or business garden, as birds and butterflies stop in to visit. Then learn the bigger picture of why this sort of native patch is so valuable in the LRGV.

The six-week workshop runs on Tuesday morning from 9-noon. Each week, participants will learn from local professionals about: Native Trees, Birds and Butterfly Gardening, Native Soils, Invasive Species and Earth-friendly Pest Controls, Xeriscape Garden, and Rainwater Harvesting.

Date: Tuesdays (February 2- March 8)

Time: 9:00 am- Noon

Fee: $60 per person



Create a Bird & Butterfly Garden in Your Yard – Workshop at Quinta Mazatlan

Allen Williams

The six Backyard Habitat Steward Sessions feature the valley’s most knowledgeable wildscape teachers including Allen Williams!  Sign-up now for the October 15 to November 19th series at Quinta Mazatlan.

Have you wanted to see more birds and butterflies in your yard but you’re not sure where to start?  Start at Quinta Mazatlan!   The Backyard Habitat Steward program consists of 6 sessions on Tuesdays from October 15 – November 19, from 9:00am-11:30am.  The Rio Grande Valley hosts an amazing diversity of birds and butterflies and with a few modifications, your yard can be a thriving habitat for Valley wildlife.   Participants will be inspired by McAllen’s big backyard with indoor and outdoor learning each week.  Come and learn about all the benefits of creating backyard habitat!  Many topics will be discussed by guest speakers who are experts in their fields.  Reserve Your Space Now!

Allen Williams of Williams Wildscapes will guide participants through designing their backyard.  Allen will also discuss different water features from bird baths to misters to full ponds.  Delila Martinez with the City of McAllen Public Utility and Recycling Departments will talk about using water conservatively to save money and natural resources.  Learning how to make and use compost will be an important step to maintaining a low-cost water-wise landscape. Mike Heep, of Heep Nursery, will provide participants with tips and a list of native plants that will provide food and cover for native wildlife.  Mike will also be bringing plants from his nursery to participants to view and purchase.   Participants will also participate in planting a tree at Quinta Mazatlan with Forester Ed Kapel and learn how to successfully care for new plants.

Participants will be introduced to South Texas backyard wildlife by learning to identify some of the most common backyard birds and seeing them in person on the trails at Quinta Mazatlan.  We will discuss safe interactions and what to do with injured wildlife.  Participants will join interpretive guide John Brush on a bird walk, learn how to safely provide supplemental food and shelter for wildlife and clear up common misconceptions about feeding.  Finally, participants will make their own hanging mesquite orange bird feeder to take home!

Upon completion of Quinta Mazatlan’s Backyard Habitat Steward Program, participants will have the knowledge and resources necessary to transform their yard into rich wildlife habitat.  Reserve Your Space Now!  For more information about this program, please visit  The cost of the entire program is $60 and includes 6 sessions and all course materials.