Thursday, September 3, 2009

Native Plant Seminar: Lots to learn

American Lotus at Native Plant Sale and Seminar
This past weekend, I went to my first Native Plants Seminar at Irvine Nature Center. Although it was my first time attending, it was the 18th annual event, and there were a few people in the audience that had been to all 18!

The morning started with a great native plant sale, including this beautiful American Lotus, apparently the only lotus plant native to the U.S. I don’t have a pond, so did not have anywhere to put the lotus, but I did pick up a few maidenhair fern.

The plant sale continued all day, but for seminar participants, the morning was filled with two general sessions – Creating Native Meadows and The Seldom Scene: Little Known Plants with Landscape Potential.

Following the general sessions, there were workshops on topics such as Native Meadow Design, Tree Branch Anatomy, Confusing Fall Wildflowers and the Woods in Your Backyard. I attended the Woods in Your Backyard, which was a great session, but I almost wished I had attended the workshop on meadows.

I have never really thought about creating a meadow in my own yard, primarily because they seem incredibly difficult to establish, and even the maintenance does not seem so easy (Hello? Do you really think I am going to set a fire in my yard?). But this speaker was so inspiring and, while he did not make it sound easy, he did make it sound do-able.

I am working on separate blog posts on creating a meadow and the woods in your backyard. Stay tuned!

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