Robin Turell and Ruby Herron bought their first llama in 1987 at a Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo auction with the help of Turell’s father.
Today they own the 20-acre Figment Ranch on Mueschke Road in Cypress, home to about 75 llamas and alpacas as well as pygmy goats, tortoises, emus, sheep, turkeys, chickens, pigs and exotic birds, most of which have been rescued.
“We feel that it’s a need for us to be here because we do make so many people and animals happy,” Herron said. “If it wasn’t for us, some of these animals wouldn’t have any place to go.”
Figment Ranch’s animals have been rescued from abandonment, individuals who could not afford medical treatments, Hurricane Harvey and other situations.
Turell, Herron and foreman Sean Price perform the daily tasks associated with caring for the animals and maintaining the grounds. While the ranch has been around for more than 30 years, Figment Ranch Foundation became an official nonprofit in November 2018.
Proceeds from the gift shop and events hosted on the property go to purchasing feed for the animals, which costs up to $1,000 each week, Herron said.
Turell described the site as a “blank slate” that can be customized for birthday parties, family reunions, fundraisers and photo shoots, among other events.
For instance, the ranch hosted its first wedding ceremony in fall 2018. A starting cost of $500 includes a covered pavilion and restrooms, but the couple also opted for a llama photo shoot and brought in a dance floor, a DJ, catered dinner and campfire setup. The on-site Airbnb was used as a bridal suite.
The venue also has space for volleyball, kickball, soccer, football, giant Jenga and other yard games.
“The younger generation likes experiences,” Turell said. “They want something different, and that’s what we are—we’re different.”
The gift shop offers a selection of goods made from the hypoallergenic fibers of Figment Ranch’s llamas and alpacas, including handwoven rugs, dryer balls, exfoliating soaps and teddy bears.
Herron, Turell and Price have even more plans for the future, including llama hikes, felting and weaving classes, school field trips and a second Airbnb.
“Since we retired we felt we are so blessed with this [property], [and] we want to share,” Turell said
17102 Mueschke Road, Cypress
Hours: by appointment only