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James E. 'Bud' Smith Plant Materials Center (TXPMC)
Serving areas in the States of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas

Established: 1965
Size: 137.5 acres
PMC Operation: NRCS
Land Ownership: Private

Image of green tractor planting seed along a water-filled drainage ditch.The James E. “Bud” Smith Plant Materials Center began in San Antonio, Texas in 1935 as the San Antonio Nursery. The nursery was later moved to Spur and then to its present home in Knox City. The Knox City Plant Materials Center (TXPMC) was renamed in 1967 in honor of James E. “Bud” Smith for his pioneering work in plant science.

The Center provides plant solutions for central Texas, southern Oklahoma, and parts of Kansas, Colorado, and New Mexico. The wide range in topography, climatic factors, and vegetation results in a diverse and unique service area.

Plant and technology development objectives of the Center include soil health, wind and water erosion control, range and pasture improvement, wildlife habitat improvement, and water quality improvement on agricultural land.

The James E. “Bud” Smith Plant Materials Center has developed over 30 improved conservation plants including varieties of sideoats grama, switchgrass, Indiangrass, big bluestem, Texas dropseed, little bluestem, Illinois bundleflower, Engelmann’s daisy, bur oak, Maximilian sunflower, and partridge pea.



Healthy plant and animal communities

  • 'Selection 75' Kleingrass, San Marcos Germplasm Eastern Gamagrass and 'Lometa' Indiangrass developed for summer forage for livestock.
  • 'Sabine' Illinois Bundleflower, Plains Germplasm Prairie Acacia, ‘Comanche’ Partridge Pea, 'Eldorado' Engelmann’s Daisy, and 'Aztec' Maximilian Sunflower developed for inclusion in range mixes for livestock and wildlife habitat.
  • Improve grazing management practices by collecting growth curves and nutritional quality of forage of native grasses.
  • Evaluating and accessing plant material to increase forb diversity in conservation plantings.
  • Evaluation of biomass and quality of warm-season perennial grasses for use as a winter standing hay crop.


Maintain and improve soil productivity

  • Improve soil health on crop land within the service area by identifying adapted cover crop species and developing management practices.
  • 'Saltalk' Alkali Sacaton, Duck Creek Germplasm Texas Dropseed and Potter County Germplasm Dropseed developed for saline site reclamation.
  • Identifying salt tolerant native plants for use on agricultural lands.
  • Identifying adapted plants and develop management practices for mine restoration.


Promote plant material program and conservation

  • Provide training on collecting, processing, establishing, and managing native grasses for local projects throughout the service area.
  • NRCS field staff are trained in plant identification, establishment, and management of adapted plant materials for conservation programs.
  • YouTube video covering: Grain Drills and Planters.
  • The Role of the USDA-NRCS Plant Materials Program in Ecosystem Restoration Poster presentation.

James E. “Bud” Smith Plant Materials Center
3950 Farm Rd. 1292, Suite 100
Knox City, TX 79529-2514
Phone: (940) 658-3922
Fax: (884) 332-7992