Writer: Kay Ledbetter, 806-677-5608, [email protected]
Contact: Dr. Larry Redmon, 979-845-4826, [email protected]

The two-day conference is designed for women land owners who wish to learn more about land stewardship. Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Kay Ledbetter.

FREDERICKSBURG – Poultry, birding, wildlife – all offer potential revenue if the land is taken care of first. And an upcoming two-day conference will help women in the Edwards Plateau region determine the best management practices to make that happen.

“Women – Takin’ On the Stewardship Challenge,” hosted by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, will take place Oct. 2-3 at the Inn on Barons Creek in Fredericksburg.

The conference, funded by the Ruth and Eskel Bennett Trust, is an effort to reach women landowners who want to learn more about stewardship of the land they are in charge of, said Dr. Larry Redmon, AgriLife Extension program leader and associate head, Texas A&M University soil and crop science department in College Station.

“Whether they are new to a ranch or longtime caretakers, land stewardship does not always rise to the top of priorities,” Redmon said. “We want to help these ladies understand that moving it up on the priority list will help across the board in managing their property.”

Tiffany Dashmet Lowell
Tiffany Dashmet Lowell will discuss agricultural law during the conference. Texas A&M Soil and Crop Sciences photo by Beth Ann Luedeker

Cost of the two-day conference is $75 and includes the opening breakfast as well as all other meals, break refreshments and tour transportation. Hotel rooms are available at the Inn on Barons Creek for $99 per night under the Bennett-TAMU group code.

Redmon said this third year of the conference will focus on the land and potential financial avenues not typically thought about.

A keynote speaker this year will be Tiffany Dowell Lashmet, an AgriLife Extension agricultural law specialist in Amarillo, who will discuss “Agriculture Laws Every Landowner Needs to Know.”

“It is amazing the number of legal issues that can face a Texas landowner,” Lashmet said. “Can I pump water from beneath my property? Who is liable if my cattle get out on the roadway and are hit by a car? Is an oral lease agreement enforceable? What do I do if a pipeline company says they are going to sue me to get an easement across my property?”

These are just some of the common legal questions facing landowners Lashmet will address.

“Anytime I speak, it is important for me to help make legal issues understandable and to ensure audience members have a chance to ask any questions they may have,” she said.

Other topics and speakers on this year’s agenda include:

– What is Land Stewardship? Dr. Barron Rector, AgriLife Extension range specialist, College Station.

– Water in the Hill Country – Our Most Valuable Resource, Dr. Diane Boellstorff, AgriLife Extension water resource specialist, College Station.

– Reptiles and Amphibians – Get to Know Your Neighbors, John Karges, The Nature Conservancy associate director of field science, San Antonio.

– Stewardship of the Land – What’s Involved? Dr. Bob Lyons, AgriLife Extension range specialist, Uvalde.

– Birding in the Texas Hill Country, Dr. Maureen Frank, AgriLife Extension wildlife specialist, Uvalde.

– What Women Need to Know About Finances? Cissy Williams, senior vice president-lending in San Saba, and Jeri Langehennig, vice president-relationship manager in Mason, both with Capital Farm Credit.

– Pasture-Raised Poultry, Mandy Krause, co-owner of Parker Creek Ranch, D’Hanis.

– Stewardship in the Edwards Plateau: The Next Generation, Dr. Megan Clayton, AgriLife Extension range specialist, Corpus Christi.

Annaliese Scoggins of Texas Parks and Wildlife will discuss tracking and scat identification. Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Kay Ledbetter.

The second day will include tours that concentrate on “Hunting Property Use Options” in the morning. Rector will lead a session on plant identification and Annaliese Scoggins with Texas Parks and Wildlife will lead a session on tracking and animal scat identification. A skeet shooting demonstration will be led by Denise Harmel-Garza, AgriLife Extension associate, College Station, and an archery shooting demonstration is being coordinated by Brad Roeder, AgriLife Extension agent in Gillespie County.

The tour will continue to Texas Hills Vineyard for a wine tasting, and then to Lavender Lane Farms and the CKC Dairy, both near Blanco.

For more information, go to the website, http://bennetttrust.tamu.edu/, or contact Redmon at [email protected] or an AgriLife Extension agent in the region.