About Lennox Woods

One of the most beautiful and pristine old-growth forests in the state, the 375-acre Lennox Woods Preserve is located in an extremely rural area in northeast Texas. It is a vivid reminder of the southern hardwood forests which were typical of floodplains throughout Texas before the arrival of settlers. In fact, as the entry point for most settlers into Texas in the 19th century, including Davy Crockett and Sam Houston, this area would have been their first sight of the abundance and natural bounties of northeast Texas.

History of Lennox Woods

Most of the woodlands in the area were sold for logging purposes, but these woods have been protected for four generations by the Lennox family of Clarksville, who originally acquired the property in 1863. The first 170 acres were donated in 1987 by Martha, David and Bagby Lennox to The Nature Conservancy. Another 206 acres were donated by Martha Lennox and the Lennox Foundation in 1990, after her brothers had passed away. The Lennox Woods Preserve  was dedicated in May of that same year.

The Nature Conservancy has deployed teams  of zoologists and botanists to conduct  intensive, seasonal inventories of the  plant, bird, fish, mammal, reptile and amphibian populations in the Preserve.  

Lennox Woods is an excellent old-growth woodland, containing one of the few remaining examples of fully mature, virgin timber found in the state, some greater than three feet in circumference. The Texas Forest Service aged one post oak on the Preserve at over 300 years old and a loblolly pine at nearly 150 years old. The Preserve has been called a "museum piece" of old-growth hardwood bottomland and hardwood forest.

The upland forest is a mixed evergreen-deciduous forest of the shortleaf pine-oak series dominated by shortleaf pine, white oak, loblolly pine, southern red oak, red maple and various hickories.  The  understory and shrub layers are dogwood, American beautyberry, mulberry and farkleberry. The ground layer has clumps of perennial grasses and sedges.

The bottomland hardwood forest is dominated by water oaks, willow oaks, bur oaks, overcup oaks, sweetgum and some hickory species. The understory has small trees such as musclewood, winged elm and bluebeech. Various sedges are prevalent.  In the occasionally flooded portions of the bottomland hardwood forest is the only extant population of the globally threatened Arkansas meadow rue. The hooked buttercup and Wildenovi's sedge, two species that are rare in Texas, are also found here beneath the towering trees. Southern Lady's Slipper orchids are another rare flower found on the Preserve. This orchid is a critically imperiled species in Texas.

The Preserve is part of the Pecan Bayou watershed, the largest undamed watershed in northeast Texas. It supports a diverse aquatic population and averages twenty to twenty five feet in width. The Preserve contains many associated stream channels.