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Environmental Sustainability

Developing and operating The Cedars Ranch in an environmentally-friendly manner is a great opportunity for us to put our key values into practice. Being eco-conscious, climate responsible, and simply just smart in how we use natural resources, feels like the right thing to do. The Cedars Ranch is committed to best practice strategies within each key environmental area of energy, water and materials, and we are dedicated to responsible stewardship of the land. 

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Energy Efficient Design

Wanting both incredibly beautiful and sustainable design, we hired award-winning green architects, The Acre, to create our eco-friendly wedding venue and wellness retreat. The master plan has been organized such that our main building, the great hall, faces south in order to maximize passive solar gain, and to align with predominant wind patterns for passive cooling. A defining element of this project is its emphasis on visually incorporating environmentally sensitive strategies to make The Cedars Ranch a project that is as green as possible.

Solar Power

Solar Photovoltaics (PV), is a low-carbon technology, harnessing renewable energy from the sun via the use of solar panels. This technology converts sunlight directly into electric power. No carbon emissions! No degradation of limited environmental resources! Our great hall will be utilized as a means for solar collection using solar photovoltaic technology. The great hall is a beautiful modern dance and event space, with open-air features allowing the structure to cool naturally, and help guests feel immersed in the nature surrounding them. The building's 30 degree pitched roof is designed to optimize the annual solar power harvest, as well as showcasing the renewable energy generation feature. The merging of both beautiful and sustainable design!

Our great hall roof is sized in accord with the facility energy demands over the course of the year. While we will have the ability to generate the electric power we need by renewable means, we will still be connected to the electricity grid via our local energy provider Pedernales Electric Cooperative. With the grid-tied system, any excess energy that we generate via our solar panels can be sent to the grid, while our connection to the grid allows us to pull electricity from it if we have generation shortfalls. In this way, our campus will be “net zero energy”, meaning the total amount of energy used by the buildings on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created on the site. 


Water Conscious Landscaping

We are committed to water conservation, particularly water conscious landscaping in this arid Texas climate. Read more in our "Ecosystem" section below, about how we worked with a permaculture team to develop a native and flourishing ecosystem on our ranch, which optimizes water conservation and increases biodiversity. create a healthy and thriving garden and landscape in balance with nature. 

Rainwater Harvesting

Another key opportunity to operate sustainably and in balance with our environment, is in relation to water. With water being such a precious natural resource, especially here in Texas, we’re maximizing our potential for rainwater harvesting. Our main structures, including our great hall and yurt will collect rainwater for use onsite. Pictured above is our reception pavilion, which will be constructed in phase 2 of our project. The unique form of the reception pavilion’s butterfly roof is designed to optimize the capture of rainwater that will be stored on site and filtered into drinking water.


Green Practices

Here are a few things we are doing to help reduce our impact on the earth’s natural resources, particularly in relation to minimizing waste: By living simply, we minimize the use of materials and energy; We reuse and re-purpose as much as we can; We compost onsite; We try to minimize printed promotional material for The Cedars Ranch, but if we do produce leaflets, brochures or business cards, they are printed on recycled paper; We separate and recycle all materials that we can’t otherwise use; We use eco-friendly cleaning products.

Visit our Green Resources page for some tips and guidance on living in balance with our environment.

Sustainable Vendors

We are in the process of developing relationships with wedding vendors, and are starting to compile our preferred vendor list. Our preference is that our wedding vendors be as green as possible. This may include considerations such as they have good waste management policies, provide organic products, and/or they use locally-sourced materials etc. 

As part of our contract agreements, we insist that catering and clean up staff working at The Cedars Ranch segregate all waste streams, and recycle and compost onsite. We also encourage our clients to buy local and use local resources, so as to reduce our travel footprint and promote win-wins for everyone in the area.


Sustainable Landscaping - Permaculture

Permaculture is defined as “the development of agricultural ecosystems intended to be sustainable and self-sufficient.” We are committed to water conscious landscaping, and developing a native and flourishing ecosystem on our land. To help us achieve this aim, we worked with a permaculture team who helped us create a healthy and thriving garden and landscape in balance with nature. In order to maintain optimum soil moisture and biodiversity in this often arid landscape of the Texan Hill Country, berms and swales were constructed along designated contour points on our land. Swales, essentially small ditches located along a slope, retain moisture on the land by capturing the run-off downslope. By planting fruit trees and native species on the berms (the raised part of the swale and berm system), we cultivate further soil richness and biodiversity.

Native Species

Planting and supporting native species at The Cedars Ranch is an important part of being good custodians of the land. Native plants have adapted to the ecological conditions of their region and therefore need less watering intervention. In Texas where droughts happen easily and where the summers are hot and dry this means that native plants are better able to survive both the heat and the drier soil conditions.

The use of native plants also means a reduced need for pesticides and poisons because the plants are more adapted and able to resist attacks from local pests - both insect and disease. Since the plants have adapted to local soil conditions they also need fewer soil amendments. Bluebonnets, for example, Texas’ state flower, grow better in poor soil conditions.

When you add up all of these differences you arrive at a smaller carbon footprint, also factoring in that using native plants usually means they have not had to travel as far to get to your local nursery, also a bonus!

Native plants provide the right food supply for beneficial insects, pollinators, butterflies and birds, and hence ensure a thriving natural ecosystem.

Are you looking for that special venue to host your wedding, celebration, special event, corporate seminar or wellness retreat, that respects your values around environmentalism? 

Reach Out To Us Today

Triple Bottom Line

At The Cedars Ranch, we go beyond just environmental sustainability to embrace the triple bottom line of environmental, social and economic sustainability. 

Our Mission Statement

"The Cedars Ranch provides a stellar natural setting, with inspiring modern architecture, creating physical and emotional space for celebration, personal growth and community building, while committed to environmental, social and economic sustainability." 

Sustainable Development

"Sustainable development is development that meets the needs and aspirations of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” (source: Brundtland Report, 1987). The Cedars Ranch business model is based on the three pillars of sustainability: environmental, social and economic, otherwise known as the "Triple Bottom Line."

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"People" - Social Sustainability

The Cedars Ranch is about creating community, and providing a space for people to come and celebrate, learn, vision, heal, and grow. For individuals, it is a place to focus on well-being, to develop skills (whether personal or business), or just get away and relax in a supportive natural environment. As a couple, Bill and Marilyn value high participation in the community and The Cedars Ranch will participate in local community building events. The Cedars Ranch promotes inclusivity at all levels, and is LBGT-friendly.

"Planet" - Environmental Sustainability

Being eco-conscious, climate responsible, and efficient in how we use natural resources, is a central value for us, is crucial for the continued thriving of our species, and makes great business sense too.

At a recent World Economic Forum, leaders in business, government, academia, and civil society named climate change and water supply as two of the top five global risks facing companies today. 

"Companies who get a handle on environmental risks can talk about sustainability as a means of cutting costs and driving profits. In doing so, they protect their bottom lines—and the planet—for current and future generations." (source: World Resources Institute, 2013)

The Cedars Ranch will run on renewable energy in the form of solar power. It will be a net-zero campus, meaning the total amount of energy used from the grid by the campus on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created. Solar Photovoltaics (PV), is a low-carbon technology which will provide The Cedars Ranch with it's own source of clean and reliable energy, with minimum environmental impact. 

"Two million additional residents (to the Texas Hill Country) pose a real threat to the region’s most essential and valuable resource, water, which sustains all life and environmental characteristics of the Hill Country." (The University of Texas, Community and Regional Planning, 2015). 

At The Cedars Ranch we will implement best practice in relation to water management by harvesting our own rainwater on-site, landscaping in a water conscious manner, and developing a native and flourishing ecosystem that retains on-site water and assists in aquifer maintenance. Visit our "Green" page for more information on our environmentally-friendly practices.

"Prosperity" - Economic Sustainability

The Cedars Ranch will be an economically sustainable and viable business, able to grow from strength to strength each year. We are answering a large market demand for wedding venues and retreat spaces in the Texas Hill Country, while offering something a little unique in terms of our beautiful contemporary architecture and ecological focus.

The success of The Cedars Ranch will generate employment, promote local businesses and boost the local economy in the Wimberley and surrounding area. Many events will draw from the rich resources in the local area for speakers, wellness professionals and vendor services, creating a win-win scenario for everyone.

Contact us today.

We'd love to hear from you!