‘Marsh Maniacs’ Plant More Than 15,000 Stems of Smooth Cordgrass

  • June 23, 2022
  • News

The Galveston Bay Foundation welcomed 120 “marsh maniacs” to the Bay on June 18 for Marsh Mania, the organization’s annual marsh grass planting event. Volunteers planted 15,400 stems of smooth cordgrass at three locations around the Galveston Bay system, restoring approximately 7 acres of wetland habitat in the process.

“Planting marsh grass is hard work, and we are so appreciative of the effort put in by this year’s Marsh Mania volunteers,” said Emily Ford, Galveston Bay Foundation’s Volunteer Engagement Manager. “The year-to-year transformations at our planting sites have been very dramatic, and we’re excited to see these wetlands continue to grow and expand.”

A nationally recognized, signature community event, Marsh Mania engages local citizens in hands-on restoration activities while increasing their awareness and appreciation of the wetlands, which serve as a nursery habitat for various species of crabs, shrimp, and fish, among other critical functions.

Twenty volunteers planted nearly 3,500 stems of smooth cordgrass at a 1.5-acre marsh restoration site at the Trinity Bay Discovery Center in Beach City. More than 5,000 smooth cordgrass stems were planted by 40 volunteers at a 3-acre marsh restoration site at Galveston Bay Foundation’s headquarters in Kemah, and 60 volunteers planted more than 7,000 stems of the native marsh grass at a 2.5-acre marsh restoration site at the Sweetwater Preserve in Galveston.

Marsh Mania originated in 1999 and drew 1,500 volunteers who set a national record in its first year by planting nearly 70,000 stems of smooth cordgrass in a single day. The inaugural event created 14.5 acres of new habitat at eight sites around Galveston Bay. Twenty-three years later, more than 8,000 community volunteers have restored over 220 acres of vital salt marsh habitat at 99 sites around Galveston Bay.

Marsh Mania 2022 was made possible with support from event sponsors including ExxonMobil, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund, Citgo, Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages, John P. McGovern Foundation, Odfjell, Reliant Energy an NRG Company, Transocean, and United Airlines.