The Watson Rare Native Plant Preserve- The stuff of fairy tales

I was 24 pages into Geraldine Watson’s book, Reflections on the Neches: A Naturalist’s Odyssey along the Big Thicket’s Snow River, when I was motivated by both the book and the first beautiful weather of the year to visit the Geraldine Watson Rare Plant Preserve.  The day became one of the most magical I have experienced in The Thicket.

In fact, within moments of arriving I had ideas of writing an article on the serenely beautiful flora and, given what I had gleaned of Mrs. Watson from her book, I was eager to learn about the dynamic woman responsible for it.  My research yielded this January 2, 2018 article by Sophia Dembling: “How a Rare Native Plant Preserve Sustains One Texan Woman’s Legacy- The rise of an unlikely naturalist and fierce preservationist.”  The article is well written and captures Geraldine Watson in the manner I might have. Why reinvent the wheel?

Dembling uses words such as “enchanting” and “a botanical wonderland” to describe what I saw and felt during my visit.  It is a fool who would ever mistake whimsy for weakness because the preserve is a fairy forest complete with stone cottage built solely by Watson.

I plan to return to the Watson Preserve when I finish her book.  I want to look upon her forest and cottage with a deeper understanding of who she was and what she fought so hard to protect- I have a feeling the experience will be even more fulfilling.  

Visit the preserve! See if you, too, feel as though you have stepped into a Dr. Seuss book!

Geraldine Watson Rare Native Plant Preserve is located at 527 Co Rd 4777, Warren, TX 77664

Other readings on Geraldine Watson and her Rare Native Plant Preserve:

“Watson Rare Native Plant Preserve” by Le’Anne Alexander Jun 29, 2018

“Watson Rare Native Plant Preserve” – Main site

“Piney Woods Conservationist Devotes Life to Cause” by Jane McBride April 18, 2009

The Life of Geraldine Watson

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