Vol. 29, No.l
A publication of the VIRGINIA NATIVE PLANT SOCIETY
Conserving wild flowers and wild places
Our Mountain Roots
Annual Meeting 2010
VNPS members are invited to gather
September 10-12 in Shenandoah Na¬
tional Park for the Annual Meeting
2010, hosted by the Piedmont Chapter.
In keeping with the meeting's theme,
"Our Mountain Roots," activities will
highlight the park's cultural history as
well as its plant communities. A variety
of hikes will showcase varied ecosys¬
tems with their native plants, many still
in bloom or fruit. Be ready for the chal¬
lenge of sorting out asters and golden-
rods, or spotting more elusive plants
such as doll's eyes (Actaea pachypoda )
or ladies' tresses (Spiranthes spp). The
Friday-night speaker, park botanist
Wendy Cass, will describe efforts to pre¬
serve the park's botanical treasures. Ac¬
commodations are reserved at Skyland
Resort. Members are encouraged to
monitor the Bulletin and the website as
more information and registration de¬
tails become available.
Don't judge a book by its cover
The curious case of wild ginger pollination
W hat pollinates wild ginger? This seems like an easy question. The incon¬
spicuous little flowers are held close to the forest floor, often completely
hidden by a dense canopy of ginger leaves above. Flower color is rather drab,
dominated by brown and maroon hues. Wind pollination seems completely un¬
likely and flowers pollinated by bees, butterflies, moths, or hummingbirds are
always much more showy and accessible to these flying creatures. Flies, how¬
ever, given their natural inclination to seek carrion as a food source for their
babies (i.e. maggots), are often attracted to brown and maroon flowers. And
because their actual quarry, animal carcasses, would be located on the ground,
visiting a wild ginger flower could easily be perceived to be consistent with
routine fly behavior. It seems obvious: wild ginger flowers sure look like they
ought to be cross-pollinated by flies of some sort.
In fact, I remember being taught long ago that fungus gnats, a sort of fly,
pollinate wild ginger, and, I am embarrassed to admit that I have passed along
that half truth (really, less than half true) to more than one class of students. The
general idea of fly-based pollination for wild ginger was widely repeated in floras
and accounts of natural history prior to 1940, and a study of wild gingers and
fungus gnats was published somewhat later (Vogel, 1978). These alleged gnat
and fly pollinator theories have dispersed widely and now can be found infesting
the Internet. It is not difficult to locate on the Web multiple iterations of and
variations upon the wild ginger-fly/gnat story. Sometimes the
story is embellished with
wonderfully elaborate de¬
tails: flies newly emerged in
early spring allegedly en¬
counter wild ginger flowers
while searching for the thaw¬
ing bodies of small mammals
that failed to survive the pre¬
ceding harsh winter. Often the
story is told with the imprimatur
(See Wild Ginger sex , page 6)
Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
From the president
Winter plant clues bring warm thoughts
W hile there's still snow cover with the day, and while away a cold morning think-
here in mid-January. I've ing warm thoughts. A book I like for looking up off-
hile there's still snow cover
here in mid-January, I've
been spending a little more time
inside. Oh the things you find!
Yesterday it was a collection of plant parts, pretty
dried up. What ARE these? Where did they come
from? I really wasn't sure, but sat looking closely at
them until it started to come back to me. A bit of the
flowering part of skunk cabbage looking like something
from another planet. A stem of flowers from a box el¬
der, I think. The calyx of a stachys flower, purple on
the tips and still stuffed with hairs. Some grass, no
less a mystery now than when I first picked it! While
we should all heed the rule of not picking on publicly
owned lands and gardens, I sometimes come in with a
handful of things from yard or roadside and have a
closer look. Not only are the pieces interesting in them¬
selves, and amazing because they keep some rather
delicate looking parts, but you can shut your eyes and
remember the feel of the air, or the smells associated
season finds is Wildflowers in Winter, by Carol
Levine, although there are other good ones.
There is plenty to look forward to in the coming
spring, including another stimulating lineup of
speakers at our Annual Workshop on March 6, the
second official Invasive Removal Day on May 1 that
we cosponsor with the Virginia Master Naturalists,
and another week-long trip to Southwest Virginia
beginning May 9. Please look for more information
on the trip elsewhere in this newsletter, or contact
the office for details.
I want to wish a warm welcome to new members,
particularly those of you who received gift member¬
ships last year. Thanks also to the members who gave
those gifts. I hope you will like what we offer, both on
the state level and in your chapter, and continue your
association with us.
Your President, Sally Anderson
Join VNPSfor a Southwest Va. botany-natural history foray
Set aside the week of May 9-14 for a
trip of exploring and botanizing. This
year's trip will include stops at Mount
Rogers for a visit to the boreal forest of
Virginia and a walk among the wild¬
flowers. Doug Ogle has agreed to lead
us on a trip to the ponds of Saltville. It is
an area of much history, unique plant
growth (can you believe saltwater
plants?) and geologic wonder.
We will visit the Clinch Mountain
Wildlife Management Area to see spec¬
tacular displays of larkspur and tril-
lium as well as blue-eyed Mary ( Col-
linsia verna). This area climbs 1,600 feet
above the valley to offer beautiful
views as well as a diversity of flora.
A drive through Burkes Garden in
Tazewell County is always a treat. It is
one of the most scenic areas in the Old
Dominion. This is the highest valley in
Virginia at 3,000 feet. For the birders this
area offers waterfowl in the ponds and
is home to the golden eagle. A drive
through this area is as rural as it gets.
The pastoral setting with the mountains
looming above is spectacular.
Breaks Interstate Park is located in
Page 2 =
Dickinson County and spills over into
Kentucky. This is the deepest canyon
east of the Mississippi. The 4,500 acres
of this park offer a wide variety of plant
life including catawba rhododendron
(.Rhododendron catawbiense). The Russell
Fork River offers fishing and
whitewater rafting. We will spend the
night in the lodge there and join a park
ranger for a close-up look at a true Vir¬
The drive between Breaks Inter¬
state Park and Natural Tunnel State
Park is quite scenic and includes a stop
at Birch Knob where on a clear day six
states can be seen from the tower. Once
we arrive at Natural Tunnel we will see
an incredible variety of plants. This was
one of the highlights of the 2009 trip. If
you are interested in geology, there are
fossils found in the limestone rocks
here. Natural Tunnels was dubbed the
eighth wonder of the world by William
More information is coming soon.
Trip cost is $600 and includes lodg¬
ing, guides, a $100 VNPS donation, and
most breakfasts. Trip limit is 16. To re¬
serve space, send a $100 deposit to
the VNPS office. To learn more, con¬
tact Butch Kelly (firstname.lastname@example.org
or 540- 384-7429).
Globally rare ecosystem threatened by marina
Tucked in the far southeastern corner of Virginia, the Back Bay National Wildlife
Refuge and its namesake. Back Bay, harbor a rich array of aquatic life and vibrant bird
populations and draw anglers and birders year round. The shallow bay, averaging
just four feet in depth, is ruled by the wind rather than lunar tides, making it a globally
rare ecosystem. The bay has been designated an Aquatic Resource of National Impor¬
tance by federal agencies, but that doesn't automatically protect it from harm.
In 2005, a Virginia Beach developer applied for a permit from the Army Corps
of Engineers to build a 76-slip commercial marina in the bay just north of the
wildlife refuge. The project would result in a significant increase in motorboat
(See Back Bay, page 8)
— Winter 2010
Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
Bird bellies provide plant link
What do the following have in
common? The Statue of Liberty arrives
in New York Harbor. A patent is filed
for the first roller coaster. Grover Cleve¬
land becomes president of the United
States. The Apache warrior, Geronimo,
is fighting U.S. troops. Louis Pasteur
invents the rabies
vaccine. A 19-
' two years
old. The Vir¬
Hotel gets a
"facelift and will soon
reopen as the Princess Anne Hotel.
The answer lies in the 19th century —
the year 1885.
The Virginia landscape in 1885
was, in many places, a shadow of its
former self. The long leaf pine had been
logged to near extinction. Forests that
greeted the early colonists had been
cleared for homes, crops and pastures.
Marshes and swamps had been
drained to increase acreage for agricul¬
ture. George Washington had made a
failed attempt a century earlier to
wrestle land from the Great Dismal
Swamp. Watershed quality had de¬
clined as soil erosion from farmlands
clouded streams, rivers and bays.
All the while, wildlife was pushed
from its native homes and forced to find
new food and cover. Flocks of wild tur¬
key moved out as jays, crows and star¬
lings moved in. Cultivated crops of
corn, oats, barley and wheat proved a
boon for wildlife. Cleared forests cre¬
ated edges where grass, perennials and
shrubs could grow and provide wild¬
life with seeds, fruit, insects and cover.
The ivory-billed woodpecker and the
passenger pigeon became extinct
while other wildlife flourished and
adapted to the ways of mankind.
The ability of wildlife to adjust and
adapt to altered landscapes and intro¬
duced foodstuffs had long been of in¬
terest to field naturalists. The famous
author of Birds of America (1827-1838),
John James Audubon, shot the birds he
posed and painted. He studied their
stomach contents and noted foods
eaten as "wild fruits and grains,"
"weed seeds" or "insect and plant ma¬
terials." With scalpel, tweezers, pencil
and journal in hand, Audubon became
an early practitioner of studying bird
food habits in a laboratory.
The traditional study of wildlife
and food habits occurs in the field.
The field naturalist needs a keen eye,
patience and excellent recordkeeping
skills. Henry David Thoreau is an early
example. Weary after writing Walden,
Thoreau embarked on a labor of love
as he began to observe and record the
goings-on of the native plants and
wildlife near his home in Concord,
Massachusetts. Thoreau writes of
American chestnuts in the fall of 1850
that "the chestnuts are rattling out.
The jays scream and the red squirrels
scold while you are clubbing and shak¬
ing the trees." He found 35 chestnuts
a mouse had stored in the rodent's gal¬
lery. Thoreau noted the fall chestnut
harvest of 1852 "was more than the
squirrels could consume."
Would that we could know what
Thoreau did. The queen of the eastern
forests fell victim to chestnut blight in
1904. The American chestnut was all
but a memory by 1950. Thanks to
Thoreau and his writings in Wild
Illustration by Nicky Staunton
Illustration by Barbara Stewart
Fruits, we can wonder what it's like
when "the chestnuts are rattling out."
In 1885 the study of wildlife and
their food habits became a mandate of
the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Early research focused on wildlife food
habits that could harm farmers' fields.
It evolved to include the study of water-
fowl, upland game birds, fur and game
animals and other species. Fish and
Wildlife Service record #1 was of a song
sparrow shot in a marsh near Ossining,
N.Y. at 6 p.m. on July 3,1885. Its stom¬
ach contents were studied and recorded
as 20 percent animal matter and 80 per¬
cent vegetable matter. Decades later,
more than 250,000 records existed for
birds plus thousands of records on
mammals, reptiles and amphibians.
This vast reserve of federal food-
habits data plus that gathered by state
conservation and fish and game de¬
partments across decades is the back¬
bone of a unique book titled American
Wildlife & Plants : A guide to Wildlife Food
Habits. This book was published in
1951 under the direction of the U.S. Fish
and Wildlife Service, Department of the
Interior, at the Patuxent Research Ref¬
uge, Laurel, Maryland. The authors
who took on the challenging task of or¬
ganizing, interpreting and publishing
this data were biologist Alexander C.
Martin, consultant Herbert S. Zim and
Arnold L. Nelson, director of the
Patuxent Research Refuge.
This book answers questions
such as "What foods does the com¬
mon goldfinch eat?" and "What
foods do goldfinches prefer to eat?"
The answer is that ragweed year-
round is 10-25 percent of the gold¬
finch diet; thistle and sweet gum are
10-25 percent of its wintertime diet
and shepherds-purse is 10-25
. percent of its summertime diet.
. ’ l Goosefoot, sunflower, dande¬
lion, velvet grass and alder are
(See Bird study, page 7)
■ Page 3
Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
Flora of Virginia
A peek inside the pages . . .
T he manuscript of the Flora of Virginia goes to the
copy editor next January, so this year is the home
stretch! Ecological review of completed family treat¬
ments is now under way, and authors are winding up the
remaining family treatments, as measurements are verified
in the herbarium with specimens collected in Virginia. We're
also gearing up to collect plants on our most-wanted list for
illustration this year. In late 2012, we'll have the Flora in hand.
We wanted you to have a preview of what the Flora is
going to look like inside, so here (opposite) is a complete
family treatment that will serve as a model 7 xl0-inch page.
We picked a family — the Annonaceae — with only two rep¬
resentatives in the state, which lets us present a whole family
treatment on one page. This treatment is not final, and there
will probably be a few tweaks to the format.
Let's have a look. A family treatment will begin with
the prominent display of the family name, its authority,
and its common name. This is followed by the family de¬
scription (D) and the references (R) used in the family's
taxonomy and description. The taxa within a family will
be presented genus by genus, alphabetically. For families
with more than one genus in Virginia, there will be a di¬
chotomous key to the genera, but for the Annonaceae, we
have only one genus, Asimina. A genus name is also pre¬
sented prominently, with its authority and common name.
The genus is then described (D) and references (R) given.
Next comes the dichotomous key to the species in the
genus; in Virginia, there are two species in Asimina. The
key is followed by a full description of each species, pre¬
sented in alphabetical order. A species description in¬
cludes authority, common names, and synonymy, keyed to
references, which are coded to save space (for example, C =
Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and
Adjacent Canada, by Henry A. Gleason and Arthur
Cronquist; F = Gray's Manual of Botany, by Merritt Lyndon
Fernald; FNA = Flora of North America; and RAB = The
Manual of the Vascular Flora of the Carolinas, by Albert E.
Radford, Harry E. Ahles and C. Ritchie Bell). Then come
the morphological description of the species (D), phenol¬
ogy information (P), habitat information (H), status (S), and
any comments about the species (C).
More than 3,500 taxa will be keyed and described in
the Flora of Virginia, and 1,400 taxa will be illustrated with
drawings commissioned especially for this book. The Flora
will be a hefty 1,400 pages long and will include a history
of botanical exploration in Virginia, a discussion of the
plant communities in the commonwealth, and a glossary.
This is an exciting time, made even more so by the ter¬
rific support we have received from the Virginia Native
Plant Society, its chapters, and, individually, its members.
While our fundraising lagged a bit last year compared with
2008, we did better than we had anticipated, given the re¬
cession. This serves as our springboard for raising the
$250,000 we need to make the Flora Project succeed. You
can find information about the Flora Project and our spon¬
sorship programs on our website, floraofvirginia.org, or
call me at 804-371-5561. Once again, VNPS has designated
the Flora Project as the recipient of its annual giving cam¬
paign. An appeal letter should arrive in your mailbox soon.
Bland Crowder, associate director and editor, Flora of Virginia Project
Flower Camp to offer Nature Journaling Workshop
Seeing nature in a new light will be the focus of the Nature Journaling Workshop
to be held April 30 to May 2 at Nancy Ross Hugo's Flower Camp in Howardsville.
Participants will learn to observe and record natural phenomena in new ways with
artist Rhonda Roebuck, who returns to the Flower Camp setting overlooking the James
River to lead her fifth workshop there. As always, Rhonda will not only share what
she has learned from her own lifetime of journaling but also coach campers in new
and interesting ways to record what they see. Rhonda will demonstrate interesting
ways to alter digital images, play with paint, and experiment with drawing (even if
you can't draw), but her emphasis during this workshop will be less on embellishing
the journal page than on improving seeing. Rhonda's usual smorgasbord of materials
will be available for campers to use, but this year participants will spend more time
outdoors practicing techniques that enhance seeing rather than indoors working on
journal pages. Camp director Hugo will be on hand to lead forays into the woods and
gardens around Flower Camp, pointing out early spring tree traits, among other things.
Tuition of $375 includes five meals (dinner Friday through brunch Sunday), two nights'
lodging, instruction, and most materials. For more information, contact Hugo at 2047
Selma Road, Howardsville, VA 24562; email@example.com; or 804-798-6364.
Linden tree journal page by
Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
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— Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
Wild Ginger sex not as it seems
(Continued from page 1)
of authority, like a certain PowerPoint
lecture that can be downloaded from a
major university located somewhere in
the Midwest (Pm not telling which, but
it is not hard to find) in which the wild
ginger of eastern North America (Asarum
canadense ) is a featured example of fly-
mediated pollination. Flies and wild gin¬
ger make a great and convincing story,
but it's not the whole truth!
Some of the first chinks in the wild
ginger-fly story appeared in a 1940 ar¬
ticle by Donald Culross Peattie titled,
"How is Asarum pollinated?" Peattie's
article summarizes earlier literature
and recounts his own observations of
multiple species of Asarum and
Hexastylis in their native habitats in
North Carolina and California.
Peattie's main points are: 1) earlier
published accounts of wild ginger-fly
interactions are mere assertions not
accompanied by data, 2) prior to 1940,
at least two detailed studies, one in
Europe and one in Alabama, failed to
record any insect visitors to wild gin¬
ger flowers, and 3) wild ginger flowers
emit no detectable odor at all, whereas
bona fide fly-pollinated flowers are
typically foul-smelling, sometimes in
the extreme. Peattie ends with a plea
for well-documented studies of wild
Since Peattie's article, a few de¬
tailed studies of wild ginger have been
published. The consensus emerging
from several studies since the 1980s is
that wild ginger flowers are self-polli¬
nated (these are well summarized in
Kelly 1997,2001). The evidence is com¬
pelling: intact flowers that are care¬
fully bagged to prevent access by in¬
sects set seeds at rates equivalent to
untouched control flowers while flow¬
ers that are carefully emasculated (an¬
thers removed before pollen is mature)
but left uncovered (i.e., available to po¬
tential insect visitors) produce very few
seeds. The evidence shows that self-pol¬
lination predominates and cross-pol¬
lination is rare.
In the case of Asarum canadense and
closely related species, the details of self-
pollination are fascinating. As soon as
the flowers open, stigmas are receptive
but the pollen is not initially located
nearby because the stamen filaments
(stalks) are bent to a position parallel with
the base of the floral cup. Over a period
of several hours to several days, filaments
straighten, bringing the pollen-bearing
anthers into proximity with the stigmas.
Cross-pollination would be possible if
an insect visitor brought pollen to a
flower shortly after opening, but it seems
that insect visits of any kind are rare, and
most seeds form as a result of delayed
autonomous self-pollination brought
about by reorientation movements of the
stamens. At present, documentation of a
minor role for cross-pollination by gnats
or flies rests with some of the western
U.S. species of Asarum. Asarum hartzvegii
emits a faint musty floral fragrance
(Mesler & Lu, 1993) and mushroom flies
are reported to lay eggs in the flowers of
several western species (Meeuse & Mor¬
ris, 1984). But, our eastern wild ginger,
Asarum canadense, seems to be over¬
The story for the closely related
wild gingers sometimes classified in
the genus Hexastylis is a bit different.
In these plants the stamens are short,
their anthers are located well below the
stigmas, and their filaments undergo
Master Naturalists accepting applications
Applications are now being ac¬
cepted for the Arlington Master Natu¬
ralist Program that starts this fall. Make
a difference by becoming a Master
For information and to complete an
application for the Arlington program,
visit the Arlington Regional Master
Naturalist website at www.armn.org.
For additional questions, please email
Training programs are also starting all
across the state. For information about
the statewide program and for chapters
in other parts of the commonwealth,
The Virginia Master Naturalist Pro¬
gram is a statewide volunteer corps pro¬
viding education, outreach, and service
(See State naturalists , page 8)
no repositioning movements. The dis¬
tance between anthers and stigmas is
too great for easy direct self-pollination.
For the few species studied, it seems
that a variety of small insects visit flow¬
ers of Hexastylis and, while scrambling
around inside, move pollen from an¬
ther to stigma, but these pollination
events are overwhelmingly within the
same flower, not crosses between dif¬
ferent flowers (Otte, 1977).
So, things are not always as they
seem. Wild gingers look like they ought
to be cross-pollinated by flies but the
best available evidence is that only
some species are and then only some of
the time; self-pollination, whether au¬
tonomous (in Asarum) or insect-assisted
(in Hexastylis ) appears to be the norm
for these curious plants.
References cited: 1) Kelly, L. M. 1997.
"A cladistic analysis of Asarum
(Aristolochiaceae) and implications for
the evolution of herkogamy." Amer. J.
Bot. 84: 1752-1765. 2) Kelly, L. M. 2001.
"Taxonomy of Asarum section Asarum."
Syst. Bot. 26: 28-53. 3) Meeuse, B., & S.
Morris. 1984. The Sex Life of Flowers.
Faber, London. 4) Mesler, M. R., & K. I.
Lu. 1983. "A re-evaluation of the green-
flowered Asarum (Aristolochiaceae) from
southern Oregon." Brittonia 35: 331-334. 5)
Otte, D. 1977. "The pollination biology of
Hexastylis arifolia (Michx.) Small var. arifolia
and H. minor (Ashe) Blomquist
(Aristolochiaceae) in the area of Chapel
Hill, North Carolina." master's thesis. Uni¬
versity of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. 6)
Peattie, D. C. 1940. "How is Asarum polli¬
nated?" Castanea 5:24-29. 7) Vogel, S. 1978.
"Pilzmiickenblumen als Pilsmimeten." I.
Flora 167: 329-366.
W. John Hayden, VNPS Botany Chair
Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
•Bird study -
(Continued from page 3)
2-5 percent of the goldfinch diet, de¬
pending on the time of year. The data
also show that summer, fall and win¬
ter seeds make up 96, 99 and 97 per¬
cent, respectively, of their diet. Its
spring diet is 49 percent animal food
such as insects and 51 percent plant
food. This is outstanding information
for anyone who wants to attract gold¬
finches to the landscape!
The book also answers questions
such as "What wildlife utilizes sweet
gum for food?" and "To what extent
does wildlife prefer sweet gum for
food?" The answers are "mallard
ducks, bobwhite quail, Carolina
chickadees, juncos, white-throated
sparrows, towhees, Carolina wrens
and the eastern chipmunk eat sweet
gum seeds as .5 to 2 percent of their
diets; goldfinches 5-10 percent, squir¬
rels 2-5 percent and beaver (seeds and
wood) 10-25 percent of their diet. The
authors remark that "this plant is used
to only a small extent by wildlife." This
is excellent information! It helps a land¬
scaper decide whether or not to include
a native sweet gum tree in a landscape
design or restoration project.
Duck hunters might be interested
in the aquatic and marsh section, where
the food habits of specific waterfowl are
listed. Fur and game animals are listed
with their food preference data. All this
information can be used to help invite
wildlife home by planting favorite
foods. Cultivated plants such as corn,
wheat and barley have their own sec¬
tions with wildlife and food habit data.
This information stands the test
of time. Bird food habits and woody
plant preferences should be about the
same in 2010 as in 1951. The only dif¬
ference might be that the number of
invasive plants as a percentage of
wildlife diet may have increased as
invasives have secured a stronger
hold on the native landscape.
The chapter that brings closure to
this article is titled "Wildlife Plants
Ranked According to their Value."
Songbirds are the greatest part of each
plant value but the ranks also consider
water, marsh, shore and upland game
birds, fur, game and small mammals
and browsers. The plants are listed by
common name. Field and lab limita¬
tions made it difficult to drill down
past genus to identify plant species.
The woody plants that rank from
1 to 20 for their wildlife value in the
southeast region of U.S., including
Virginia's piedmont and coastal plain.
are in descending order: oak, pine,
blackberry, wild cherry, greenbrier,
grape, blueberry, hickory, black gum,
holly, poison-ivy, beech, maple, Vir-
ginia-creeper, persimmon, wax myrtle,
dogwood, mulberry and tulip tree.
The woody plants that rank from
1 to 20 for their wildlife value in the
northeast region of the U.S. are in de¬
scending order: oak, blackberry, wild
cherry, pine, dogwood, grape, maple,
beech, blueberry, birch, sumac, aspen,
spruce, hickory, fir, alder, poison-ivy,
black gum, mulberry and elm.
When cross-referenced with Dou¬
glas W. Tallamy's List of Woody Plants
Ranked by Ability to Support Lepidoptera
Species (Bringing Nature Home, 2007)
the following are truly dual-purpose,
highly beneficial native plants: oak,
wild cherry, blueberry, maple, pine,
hickory and beech. In all categories, the
mighty oak comes out on top. The U.S.
Forest Service Silvics Manual honors
the white oak, Quercus alba , as "an out¬
standing tree of all trees."
Gail Farley (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a
member of the South Hampton Roads Chap¬
ter and an author/speaker who has devel¬
oped a program titled, "10 Lawn and Land¬
scape Practices that Benefit Homeowners,
Watersheds and Wildlife."
See the address label for your membership expiration date
VNPS Membership /Renewal Form
_Individual $30 _Student $15
_Family $40 _Associate (groups) $40*
_Patron $50 _Sustaining $100
*Please designate one person as delegate for Associate membership
To give a gift membership or join additional chapters: Enclose dues, name, address, and
chapter (non-voting memberships in any other than your primary chapter are $5)
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Make check payable to VNPS and mail to:
VNPS Membership Chair, Blandy Experimental Farm, 400 Blandy Farm Lane, Unit 2,
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Membership dues are tax deductible in the amount they exceed $5. Contributions are tax deductible in accordance with IRS regulations.
is published five times a year
(Feb., April, June, August, Nov.) by
Virginia Native Plant Society
Blandy Experimental Farm
400 Blandy Farm Lane, Unit 2
Boyce, VA 22620
Sally Anderson, President
Nancy Sorrells, Editor
Original material contained in the Bulletin may be
reprinted, provided credit is given to VNPS and the
author, if named. Readers are invited to send letters,
news items, or original articles for the editor's con¬
sideration. Items should be typed, on disk in Microsoft
Word or e-mailed to: Editor, 3419 Cold Springs Rd.,
Greenville, VA24440, or email@example.com
The deadline for the next issue is March 1.
Bulletin of the Virginia Native Plant Society
•Back Bay -
(Continued from page 2)
traffic, which would disturb sensitive
marsh birds and other wildlife and
threaten the recovery of the bay's sub¬
merged grasses — critical for maintain¬
ing water quality and providing food
and shelter for fish and birds. Propellers
can easily get entangled in and destroy
underwater grasses in the shallow bay.
Hundreds of local fisherman and
other residents have consistently op¬
posed the project, and the U.S. Environ¬
mental Protection Agency and U.S. Fish
and Wildlife Service, which manages the
refuge, recommended against the permit,
the wildlife agency saying the marina
would pose "substantial and unaccept¬
able" impacts to the bay. The Virginia
Department of Game and Inland Fisher¬
ies also expressed grave concerns about
impacts of the project on wildlife, aquatic
grasses, and water quality.
However, after conducting only a
minimal environmental assessment,
the Army Corps of Engineers issued
the permit in 2008, saying that its no-
wake-zone policy, instituted in part of
the bay in 2006, would protect the ref¬
uge — even though it acknowledged it
had not enforced the no-wake-zone
policy and it did not have the money
to do so.
In December, the Southern Environ¬
mental Law Center, on behalf of Friends
of Back Bay and Back Bay Restoration
Foundation, filed suit in U.S. District
Court in Washington, D.C., challenging
the permit for failing to meet requirements
of the Clean Water Act and other laws.
Article taken from the Southern Environ¬
mental Law Center website. See
www.southernenvironmental.org for more
information or to read the entire case.
Botanical field meeting set
The 2010 Joint Field Meeting of the
Botanical Society of America (North¬
eastern Section), Torrey Botanical Soci¬
ety, and the Philadelphia Botanical Club
will explore the botany of Berkshire
County, Mass., from June 20 to 24. Par¬
ticipants will stay at Buxton School in
the heart of Williamstown, Mass.
Field trips, by bus, will include
Mount Greylock, the highest mountain
in Massachusetts with its own unique
subalpine boreal forest and
Bartholomew's Cobble, a National
Natural Landmark noted for its great
fern species diversity.
The cost is $350 including four
nights' lodging and meals from Sunday
night through Thursday breakfast. With¬
out room, price is $225. For information
contact Chair Nan Williams at
firstname.lastname@example.org or 413-339-5598.
• State naturalists
(Continued from page 6)
dedicated to the beneficial manage¬
ment of natural resources and natural
areas within their communities. It is
jointly sponsored by Virginia Coopera¬
tive Extension, the Virginia Department
of Conservation and Recreation, the
Virginia Department of Forestry, the
Virginia Department of Game and In¬
land Fisheries and the Virginia Mu¬
seum of Natural History.
Interested Virginians become
Master Naturalists through training
and volunteer service.The process for
becoming a certified Virginia Master
Naturalist typically takes 6 to 12
months. One starts by completing a
40-hour basic training course offered
by a local chapter. An additional 8
hours of advanced training are also
required. An important part of the
certification process is the required
40 hours of volunteer service.
Virginia Master Naturalist pro¬
grams and employment are open to
all, regardless of race, color, na¬
tional origin, sex, religion, age, dis¬
ability, political beliefs, sexual ori¬
entation, or marital or family status.
An equal opportunity/affirmative