Natural Habitat Making a Comeback at Trexler Nature Preserve

Uprooting Invasive Autumn Olive to Restore Native Grasslands

Natural Habitat Making a Comeback at Trexler Nature Preserve

Trexler Nature Preserve is a local destination for many tens-of-thousands of visitors each year – from families eager to explore Jordan Creek to hikers, bikers and more. Its rolling 1,108 acres, situated in Schnecksville, is among the largest area of green space in Lehigh Valley.

Notice of Trail Detours

As we continue forwarding restoration efforts, we also aim to keep the community informed about the accessibility of Trexler Nature Preserve’s valued trails.

Please check here for the latest map of trail detours. This map is also posted on site at the preserve.

View the map

And for the past decade, Wildlands Conservancy has been working in partnership with the County of Lehigh to steward the conservation value of this sought-after area.

In 2015, Wildlands specifically set our sights on the North Range, where we commenced efforts to reverse the negative impacts of Autumn olive, an invasive species native to Asia that was introduced to the United States early on in the 19th century. Autumn olive was originally valued for its ornamental quality and thought to offer erosion control, but in actuality, it creates a whole host of issues for native plant communities and the ecosystem at large.

“The work to control invasive species and bring recognition of that work to our community is impressive. These resources are invaluable and should be cherished by everyone in the Lehigh Valley,” says Sylvia and Howard Kuritzky, longtime supporters of Wildlands and participants in the October tour. “The efforts of the Wildlands at Trexler Nature Preserve are very visible and tangible as we experienced firsthand through this tour. It is illustrative of the dedication by those who lead, fund, and take part in these programs.”

Wildlands, in partnership with the Pa. Game Commission and Lehigh County, began removing Autumn olive in a 220-acre area and aims to ultimately restore the natural space with native grasses and wildflowers that will invite pollinators and wildlife to abound.

In October, more than 30 friends and supporters joined Wildlands for an educational tour of this specific restoration effort, plus a view of Wildlands’ ongoing conservation projects, which include the American Chestnut orchard, forestry management techniques, and stream and wildlife habitat restoration areas.


    An aerial view of the North Range where native grasslands restoration efforts commenced in 2015.


Trexler Nature Preserve Autumn Olive North Range

    A closer look prior to restoration efforts shows the North Range densely overtaken by invasive Autumn olive.