You’ll want to spread this.
If you’ve ever seen a post or tree with a purple stripe painted on it but don’t know exactly what it meant, you should keep your distance.
The color means means no trespassing.
“It holds the same weight and the same law violations apply. It’s no trespassing period,” Ashley Pellerin, an agent for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s extension service in Prairie View, Texas, told KETK.
The law began in 1989 in Arkansas as a means for property owners to declare private land. Other states later adopted the law.
In Texas, landowners were constantly replacing “No Trespassing” signs — either by people who didn’t want to acknowledge the signs and tore them down or by those using the signs as target practice said Jonathan Kennedy, landowner and broker.
“People hunting or fishing without the landowner’s consent is a common issue,” said Texas Game Warden Brad Clark.
People might be able to tear down a sign easily, but it is much more difficult to get rid of purple paint on a tree or a post.
Kennedy said when the purple paint law was adopted, landowners using the paint were also required to display a sign explaining what it meant. But the explanatory signs were only required to accompany the paint stripe for a year.
“Fast-forward to now, and still a lot of people don’t know what it means but it is still a law,” Kennedy said.
“The no trespassing purple, a lot of people who are color blind, they can actually see the color purple, so I believe that’s why it was chosen,” said Pellerin.
Arkansas, Texas, Illinois, Kansas and Missouri also use purple paint, but other states, including North Carolina, Maine, Florida and Idaho, use colors such as orange and lime green to indicate private property.
It pays to know what these colors mean, as a first-degree trespassing charge is a misdemeanor in most states.