River cane planting
The local office of the National Resource Conservation Service, St. Mary Soil and Water Conservation District and the local Farm Service Agency helped the Golden Meadow Plant Materials Center and members of the Chitimacha Tribe with the harvest and planting of Arundinaria tecta, or “river cane.” The Chitimacha Tribe has several members that still practice the traditional art of basket weaving using this cane. This continuing effort to reintroduce the cane onto tribal lands is designed to promote the continuation of that cultural practice. The Chitimacha have been recognized among the most skilled of the basket weavers in the Southeast. They create single and double weave baskets of split river cane woven in patterns that are centuries old. The techniques used to create these baskets have not changed much over the last two centuries, and it is still a time intensive process. At top, Chitimacha Cultural Department Director Kimberly S. Walden works at planting cane. Center, members of the Baldwin Fire Department were on hand to water in the new plants. And bottom, a close up of the newly-planted river cane.