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Featured Native Plant Advocate and Grower: Robby Maxwell

Robby Maxwell is a fisheries biologist with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and a longtime native plant advocate who spends a good deal of his free time fiddling around with native plants. Robby certifies native habitats in the southwestern portion of the state for the Louisiana Certified Habitat Program and maintains the map for the program. A native of Austin, TX, obtaining his B.S. in Aquatic Biology and M.S. in Aquatic Resources at Texas State University, Robby moved to Southwest Louisiana in 2010 to chase fish and start a family with his wife, Danielle, and son, Atticus. Like many biologists, he’s always had a strong interest in plants and animals, and the more he learned about his adopted home, the more he was intrigued by the largely lost and forgotten prairies of Southwest Louisiana. Prairie conservation and freshwater conservation have a lot of parallels, after all. After fighting mushy ground with a lawnmower for a few years, he realized how ridiculous it all was, and began to restore a seasonally wet half-acre of their hectare homestead to prairie with mostly hand-collected seeds and plants in 2016. He has now revived over an acre to a more productive and beneficial state of native flora and associated fauna, in part due to occasional burns. Since 2021 he has been selling seeds and plants under the moniker Soggy Prairie Stalks and Seeds just to have a more organized way of getting native plants out on the landscape and recouping costs. He often says that he just fights losing battles for a living and for fun. However, he also believes that a cynic is just a disappointed idealist, and maybe we can still turn things around, eventually.

Thanks Robby, for promoting native plants across Southwest Louisiana!

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