The planting beds alongside Big Lake were originally designed as the “City Park Big Lake Louisiana Trail” and meant to represent the various plant regions of our state. There were issues with those plantings that became evident as plants from other regions of the state did not always perform well in New Orleans and many of the plantings fell into disrepair over the many years since first installed.
In 2019, NPI in partnership with New Orleans City Park, the New Orleans Town Gardeners and the Master Gardeners of Greater New Orleans worked to remove invasive trees and replanted some of the gardens along the Big Lake Native Plant Trail. We hope that there will be continued renovation of multiple beds along that trail with the goal of representing the many native plants that New Orleans residents can incorporate into their landscapes and green spaces to improve ecological and wildlife benefits.
The most recent planting included hundreds of native species. See that list HERE.
Currently City Park is hosting volunteer events at Big Lake every Friday morning. To see volunteer schedules and sign up for specific dates, go to Friends of City Park's Volunteer Hub.
The following video, made in partnership with the New Orleans Town Gardeners, explains the crucial importance of native plants and the formation and goals of NPI.