Jacksonport, Ark. – Jacksonport State Park staff are committed to enhancing the natural state of the park to provide a diverse conservation area, healthy eco system and to create beneficial habitat for wildlife. As a part of that enhancing work the park is planning to plant numerous native wildflower seeds with the intent of having a diverse display of native wildflowers. In order to create the best environment for those wildflowers to grow from seed it is sometimes necessary to burn the seed planting area. A burned area will minimize the competition of weeds and various grasses that make it difficult of these wildflowers to flourish. Ash from a prescribed fire filters into the soil and returns valuable nutrients, improving conditions for new plant growth and making those plants more nourishing for animals that eat them.

A controlled prescribed burn will be conducted on one of the following days, October 22nd, 23rd or 24th. A date will be selected as we approach those dates and as we receive better weather information that will help us decide the best date to conduct this prescribed burn.

Appropriate safety precautions and careful monitoring will insure this prescribed burn will be completed with success. Prescribed fires are only ignited under favorable conditions, which include consideration of weather (temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction, etc.), fuel moisture content, and fire crew availability.

After completing the prescribed burn park staff will be planting wildflowers which will grow through the winter and provide an impressive display in the Spring and Summer of 2014.

If you would like to know more about the planned prescribed burn at Jacksonport State Park, then please contact park superintendent, Mark Ballard, 205 Avenue Street, Newport, AR 72112. Phone: (870) 523-2143, E-mail: mark.ballard@arkansas.gov..