St. Landry Parish Visitor’s Welcome Center garden designs in Ville Platte, to receive national award

In September it will be formally announced that the St. Landry Visitor’s Center will receive yet another award of recognition for the landscape garden design. This time its a national award!

Extremely grateful to be able to say, Pastorek Habitats collaborated on many of the horticultural ideas and aspects of this design including the authentic Coastal Prairie habitat gardens – serving as consultant to the Landscape Architects.

This is our third team-collaboration national award. yay! Teams!

But, it is about the habitat and the art of it, not the glory, ya’ll. 🙂


above, its a groovy garden –  –  this image, looking at the intersection of I-49 and Highway 167, looking to the northeast – more than half of the garden spaces are prairie gardens. The service road prairie garden, in foreground, I seeded with wild-collected coastal prairie seed in November, 2010.


some real wild-garden truthiness exists at the Visitor’s Center. Hope you have been to see these gardens.


the generalized garden design – click to enlarge



All of the stormwater is captured from the upland areas and roof of the building and retained in large shallow rectangular pools that double as wetland gardens. Here above, the rain pours through the gutter system, down rain chains, and to the ground.


In April, the water basins are alive with native color


The Center’s Little Bluestem grass “lawn” is one of central feature of the “front yard”. The Cajun Prairie meets the freshwater marsh.


Blackeyed Susies and Bullrush grow under the rain chains and roof drip line.


Little Blue lawn in September, above


Little Bluestem shines brightly in winter – Feb 2012 – above

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the seeded prairie gardens, last week, photos by Visitor’s Center Director, Celeste Gomez.

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Bluestem is woven through the garden

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Cajun Prairie greets you upon arriving at the St. Landry Visitor’s Center, Ville Platte, Louisiana, in the heart of what once was the Great Southwestern Prairie of Louisiana.

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Basically, not a lot has been done to maintain these gardens since they were planted 5 years ago. A habitat preserve has been established. Very few weeds exist as pressure is exerted by native grasses and flowering plants; pushy perennials. One weedy hold-out, Vasey grass, ha shows its seed head, towering above the pinky-white flowers of American Basket Flower – our native Bachelor Button, which has surprisingly naturalized from a one-time planting back in the day. I didn’t realize then that the Basket Flower would stick around but it has – a little lagniappe!


The demonstration gardens were installed by the Cajun Prairie Habitat Preservation Society with plants dug from the Cajun Prairie Restoration Project site in nearby Eunice.


the dangling flower of White Prairie Clover – in the seed-grown prairie garden area

6 thoughts on “St. Landry Parish Visitor’s Welcome Center garden designs in Ville Platte, to receive national award

  1. dog

    and we thought you were just another pretty face in the crowd!


    ol poss


  2. Great article! Very exciting! I believe the Visitor Center is actually located in Opelousas. Ville Platte is in Evangeline Parish. I’m from there. 🙂

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