News from around the state of Texas

Volunteers to Plant 550,000 Seedings in Bastrop Park

Historic wildfires claimed 95 percent of the area's trees

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    AP
    This photo provided by Texas Parks and Wildlife shows a fire burning in Bastrop State Park in Bastrop, Texas. More than 1,000 homes have been destroyed in at least 57 wildfires across rain-starved Texas, most of them in one devastating blaze near Austin that is still raging out of control, officials said Tuesday. (AP Photo/Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation, Chase A. Fountain)

    Volunteers wanting to help restore trees to a wildfire-ravaged state park in Central Texas will get the chance this weekend.

    Tree experts have spent the past year nurturing thousands of seedlings for Bastrop State Park, about 30 miles east of Austin. Historic wildfires in 2011 claimed about 95 percent of the area's trees, including most of the 6,600-acre park's signature "Lost Pines."

    The Texas A&M Forest Service says drought-hardy loblolly pine seedlings plus other associated varieties are being delivered this week to the park.

    The first volunteer planting workday is Saturday. Forestry officials say a total of 550,000 seedlings will be planted in Bastrop State Park over the next few months.

    Various private companies and nonprofits are proving funding for the program in this first year.