Upstate Field Trip: Whiteside Mountain, NC

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Join the Native Plant Society and trip leader Dan Whitten for an all day outing to Whiteside Mountain in NC followed by a tour of Highlands Biological Station.

Dan Whitten: Naturalist, trip leader

Tuesday, August 21  8:15 am to 5pm
Dan says, We will hike a two mile loop trail, moderate overall, and also take an easy walk at the Biological Station. Restroom is available at the trail-head. Wear field footwear and clothing, bring lunch, snacks, and water.
CARPOOL starts at 8:15am at Holly Springs store (intersection of Hwys 11 and 178).  Park behind the store.  Store address is 6491 SC 11, Pickens, SC 29671.
To register, contact Virginia Meador <[email protected]>.
Please indicate the number in your party, whether or not you can drive, and how many passengers you can take. Also, please include your cell number for last minute communications.
Related image

view from Whiteside Mountain trail

Upstate Native Plant Sale. Mark your calendar now!

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The Upstate Chapter of the SC Native Plant Society  holds its Spring Native Plant Sale on Saturday, April 21 at Conestee Park, 840 Mauldin Road, Greenville, SC.

There is a change in the opening time this year.  At 9am, the sale opens for Paid NPS Members Only and at 9:30am for the general public.  The sale closes at 1pm.  Join SCNPS now to take advantage of the early entry and all the other great programs, field trips, and activities offered by the Upstate Chapter.

We will offer a wide variety of native trees, shrubs, perennial wildflowers, vines, ferns, and some grasses.   There will be plenty of plants for pollinators.  Native plants are adapted to our local climate and soils and provide food and habitat for birds, insects, mammals, and all our local fauna.  They also provide beautiful flowers, fruits, form, and color to the landscape.  So, plant something for the pollinators this year and make your landscape a welcoming and beautiful space.

Cash, checks and credit will be taken.  A list of available plants can be downloaded here.  List doesn’t include Guest Vendor plants or last minute additions.

map to site of Upstate Plant Sale at Conestee Park

To volunteer to help with the Sale, click here!

To download a flyer (with a map) to share with others, click here!

Tiger swallowtail butterfly on phlox

Upstate: Rare and Unusual Plants in the Carolinas

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Note: This program will take place at the Wilkins Conference Center at Roper Mountain Science Center in Greenville.  This is a new meeting facility for the Upstate Chapter.

David White’s passion is protecting rare plants and rare communities and supporting the sustainability of these. “Our presence in those places is important, especially those in challenging conditions,” says David. He sees the effects of vegetation management, including prescribed burns, for less woody, more open habitat. David feels fortunate to be doing the work he does, often at the wildland/urban interface, at boundaries of private property.

Listening to White talk about Longleaf Pines and Shortleaf Pines is like hearing a man talk about his friends. His favorite is the Shortleaf Pine (Pinus echinata), which he affectionately refers to as his “totem”. David describes it as a “stately, beautiful tree” which he considers a keystone species of primarily the Piedmont and lower Blue Ridge.

“Before the large scale land use change to agriculture and destructive logging practices, it was part of the very common oak-pine forest and woodland ecosystem when fire and native grazers helped maintain open woodland and prairie-like conditions, in which several of our present-day rare plants likely were more common: Smooth Purple Coneflower (Echinacea laevigata), Georgia Aster (Symphytrichum georgianum), and Sunfacing Coneflower (Rudbeckia heliopsidis).”

David’s career has led to a variety of projects and publications. His work has included: Roan Mountain Grassy Bald Restoration in Pisgah National Forest, Southern Pine Beetle Prevention-Thinning and Longleaf Pine Restoration in Uwharrie and Croatan National Forests, monitoring change in Southern Appalachian populations of Ramps (Allium ricoccum), the land use history of the Savannah River Site, and prescribed fire for ecological restoration in Linville Gorge Wilderness and Carolina Sandhills National Wildlife Refuge.

Most recently, David has been involved with:
• invasive species control and River Cane restoration efforts in the Andrew Pickens District of Sumter National Forest
• botanical surveys identifying rare plants, rare communities, and invasives, on the Long Cane Ranger District of Sumter
National Forest
• status survey of Smooth Coneflower in South Carolina
• Georgia Aster monitoring in Long Cane District of Sumter National Forest, and
• assessing integrity of Longleaf Pine ecosystems in Francis Marion National Forest.

At his presentation on March 20, David will be talking about these and other recent projects.

David White has deep roots in the Carolina Piedmont. He grew up in Easley during the years that environmental concern in our country was also growing. As a Biology major at Wofford College in the 1970s, he was inspired by Dr. Gibbes Patton. David briefly considered medicine as a career, following his own father and the path of many Biology majors at Wofford, but plants called him to pursue graduate work in Plant Ecology at the University of Georgia. Today David lives on family land in Pickens, returned to forest after recovering from farming for cotton and corn.

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Upstate Speaker: Rare Flora of Polk County

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Join the Upstate Native Plant Society’s January meeting as botanist and naturalist David Campbell shares his survey of the rare and unusual plants of Polk County.
Polk County lies just on the other side of the North Carolina line, centered over the counties of Greenville and Spartanburg. It is home to the towns of Saluda, Columbus, and Tryon, to the wildflower preserve known as Pearson’s Falls and Glen, and to an impressive array of mountains and a swath of rolling foothills.
Botanist David Campbell has been cataloging the plant life of Polk County on behalf of the herbarium at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte since about 2012. Why Polk County?
“It’s a neat county because it goes from the piedmont to the mountains,” he said. “There’s a lot of geological diversity, the soils are very unusual, very nutrient-rich, so there’s some neat things to be found there.” Neat things to be found, but over fifty years since any significant body of field research had been done!
Part of the county is located within the Southern Blue Ridge Escarpment, where the Blue Ridge Mountains abruptly rise from the rolling piedmont, an area that contains some of the highest natural diversity of rare plants and animals found anywhere in the world. Polk County is also widely known for its unusual “thermal belt” — a zone within mountains or foothills with a milder climate and longer growing season than elevations either higher or lower.
Polk’s interesting plant life includes oddball “disjuncts” that are more than 500 miles away from where they are normally found, and it is said to hold the only North Carolina occurrences of plants such as the Allegheny spurge (Pachysandra procumbens), whorled horsebalm (Collinsonia verticillata), Ozark bunchflower (Veratrum woodii), and thicket creeper (Parthenocissus inserta).
Polk also supports plant communities such as you might expect to see along the Carolina Coast. In the hills south of Columbus, Campbell discovered a population of 200 sweetbay magnolia trees (Magnolia virginiana), something more often found in Coastal Plain pocosins, swamps and seeps.

David Campbell has worked for Habitat Assessment and Restoration Professionals(HARP), based in Charlotte, since 2003,and he has over 25 years of experience as an Ecologist and Botanist studying the biota of North America, the United Kingdom, and areas of the Neotropics. David has particular expertise in conducting surveys for rare and threatened species throughout the southeastern United States.

While the meeting starts at 7pm, please arrive at 6:30 to enjoy refreshments and socializing.  Start 2018 with your friends from NPS!

Upstate Meeting: Rare Plants and Botanical Oddities of Low Country Wildlife Refuges

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The July meeting of the Upstate NPS chapter features Keith Bradley who will give us a look at the rare and unusual native plants of the other end of the state, the Low Country. Bradley was recently asked by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services to survey and map the rare plants of the national wildlife refuges in the low country, including the Lewis Ocean Bay Heritage Preserve in Horry County, South Carolina.

In his talk, Bradley will highlight some of the unusual species he discovered during his survey. He hopes those attending the meeting will enjoy learning about some of the unique plants he has discovered in the wildlife refuges. He is especially passionate about the rare plants that aren’t usually given much attention. Some plants, such as the dwarf spring lily (or pygmy spider lily), are “under the radar in the conservation community,” according to Keith.
Keith Bradley has been a research botanist for over 25 years, with expertise in plant taxonomy and conservation, and has authored southeastern US plant identification guides.

The meeting is at Landrum Depot, 211 North Trade,  Landrum, SC, starting at 7pm.  Arrive at 6:30 for refreshments and socializing before the meeting.  The meeting is free and open to the public.

Rocky Shoals Spider Lily Parks Mill: Site Open House

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Rocky Shoals Spider Lilly site permanently preserved

Rocky Shoals Spider Lilly site permanently preserved

There is a huge interest in our Rocky Shoals Spider Lily site at Parks Mill on Stevens Creek in McCormick County. We have had so many groups ask about coming that we are scheduling two Open House Saturdays, May 13th & May 20th, beginning at 11:00am.

The purpose of these events is to familiarize people in the region with this beautiful historic site. We want to share our vision for its future, and to enlist the support and assistance of all Native Plant Society folks and other groups in carrying out this preservation mission. By working to inspire folks to embrace this wonderful resource with the same passion and intent as we do, we’re hoping to capture the spirit of a “Friends of the Park’s Mill Lilies” group.

You are invited to join with us at the site at 11:00 on May 13 or May 20.

We will discuss the botany of this wonderful rare plant, and its history, as well as the history of the Mill Site. We will discuss the history of how it came to be protected. We will discuss our management plans for the site, and hopefully motivate visitors to appreciate the site as much as we do. Then we will guide groups around the site to examine the lilies (they should be at peak of bloom), and to discuss the history and workings of the grist mill. We are planning for the event to last no more than two hours. Bring your own lunch and drink if you wish to enjoy a picnic on site, and we will have a bathroom facility (one) available.

All persons interested in attending the Open House, please register by emailing Virginia Meador at <[email protected]>. Include a cell phone number for last minute information.

Parking

Parking on the site is very limited, so we suggest that groups should van-pool to assure that we have adequate parking space. If you plan to travel in cars, we ask that you park in downtown Plum Branch and ride a van shuttle to the site. Call 864 979 3169 for a shuttle. Once there it’s a short walk on nearly level ground to the lilies.

If you are planning on bringing a group,please provide us with number of people in your group. We ask that one individual in your group take responsibility for making arrangements on behalf of your group and serve as our contact person. We will ask that each person sign a waiver of liability holding SCNPS and Naturaland Trust blameless in case of accidental injury.

Rocky Shoals Spider Lily Site Open House

Posted on |

Rocky Shoals Spider Lilly site permanently preserved

Rocky Shoals Spider Lilly site permanently preserved

There is a huge interest in our Rocky Shoals Spider Lily site at Parks Mill on Stevens Creek in McCormick County. We have had so many groups ask about coming that we are scheduling two Open House Saturdays, May 13th & May 20th, beginning at 11:00am.

The purpose of these events is to familiarize people in the region with this beautiful historic site. We want to share our vision for its future, and to enlist the support and assistance of all Native Plant Society folks and other groups in carrying out this preservation mission. By working to inspire folks to embrace this wonderful resource with the same passion and intent as we do, we’re hoping to capture the spirit of a “Friends of the Park’s Mill Lilies” group.

You are invited to join with us at the site at 11:00 on May 13 or May 20.

We will discuss the botany of this wonderful rare plant, and its history, as well as the history of the Mill Site. We will discuss the history of how it came to be protected. We will discuss our management plans for the site, and hopefully motivate visitors to appreciate the site as much as we do. Then we will guide groups around the site to examine the lilies (they should be at peak of bloom), and to discuss the history and workings of the grist mill. We are planning for the event to last no more than two hours. Bring your own lunch and drink if you wish to enjoy a picnic on site, and we will have a bathroom facility (one) available.

All persons interested in attending the Open House, please register by emailing Virginia Meador at <[email protected]>. Include a cell phone number for last minute information.

 

Parking

Parking on the site is very limited, so we suggest that groups should van-pool to assure that we have adequate parking space. If you plan to travel in cars, we ask that you park in downtown Plum Branch and ride a van shuttle to the site. Call 864 979 3169 for a shuttle. Once there it’s a short walk on nearly level ground to the lilies.

If you are planning on bringing a group, please provide us with number of people in your group. We ask that one individual in your group take responsibility for making arrangements on behalf of your group and serve as our contact person. We will ask that each person sign a waiver of liability holding SCNPS and Naturaland Trust blameless in case of accidental injury.

Upstate Program: Catesby, London, and 300 Years of Carolina Botany

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At the April 18 meeting of the Upstate Native Plant Society, botanist and plant researcher Amy Blackwell will share the fascinating story of connecting the work of Mark Catesby, London, and 300 years of Carolina botany. In 2011, Amy, her husband, and Patrick McMillan launched the Botanica Caroliniana project. The project involved visiting museums and herbaria in London, Oxford, and Paris to take digital photographs of plant specimens collected in the Carolinas in the 1700s. Their digital collections now include specimens from Mark Catesby (who wrote his own famous Natural History), John and William Bartram, John Lawson, André Michaux, and several others.  In her talk, Amy will share some of the exciting things she and her team have found as well as describing what it is like to collaborate with institutions in Europe.  The program begins at 7 pm Landrum Depot • 211 North Trade • Landrum, SC.  This event is free and open to the public.  Please come at 6:30pm for refreshments and socializing.

Amy Hackney Blackwell is a writer, botanist, teacher, and former lawyer. She was born in New Orleans, grew up in Baton Rouge, and went to Duke University, where she met her husband, Christopher Blackwell, a professor of Greek at Furman University.  While working on her PhD in in Plant and Environmental Science at Clemson, she began a collaboration with Patrick McMillan which led to the Botanica Caroliniana project.   Join us on April 18 for Amy’s insights and photographs from her “botanical sleuthing”.  For a map and more information, visit http://www.scnps.org

 

 

Upstate: FALL GREENHOUSE NATIVE PLANT SALE

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The Upstate chapter’s FALL GREENHOUSE SALE is set for Friday, September 30 and Saturday, October 1 from 9 am – 3 pm each day.  A wide variety of native perennial wildflowers, vines, grasses, shrubs, and trees will be available at discounts of 10%-30%.

Native plants are a good option for homeowners wishing to create more sustainable, wildlife-friendly landscapes.  Native plants are those that originated or evolved within a region over thousands of years and are well-adapted to the local climate and soil conditions. Wildlife, including pollinating insects, butterflies, and birds, are adapted to native plants. Research indicates even a modest increase in native plant cover significantly increases the number and species of breeding birds.

Fall is the best time to plant your new perennials, trees, and shrubs. Without the stress of summer heat and drought, plants can more easily become established in your landscape.  Plant roots will continue to grow throughout the long cool fall and winter even after plant foliage goes dormant.

The sale takes place at Miller and Kitty Putnam’s greenhouse, just a mile from Conestee Park. Cash, checks and credit cards will be accepted.   Parking is limited at the greenhouse.  Please carpool if possible. For further information, call Miller Putnam at 864 325-9700.

For a list of plants available at this sale, click here.

Directions to Miller and Kitty Putnam’s home:

Miller and Kitty Putnam’s home is at 180 Lakewood Drive, Greenville 29607.  From I-85, get off at Mauldin Road, exit 46 (exit for SC 291/Pleasantburg Dr., Mauldin Rd.)  Mauldin is actually exit 46C.  Go south (turn left) on Mauldin Rd. for 3.0 miles.   Once you pass Conestee Park sport complex on the right and Conestee Lake Road on the right, look for Lakewood Dr (small street only on right). Turn right on Lakewood.  (If you miss it, go to next street/stop light which is Conestee Rd. and turn right; that will bring you back to Lakewood.)  On Lakewood go 0.4 miles to 180 Lakewood, on the right.

The mail box numbering jumps a little and is not easy to see.  Putnams have dual mail boxes and two driveways.  There is a pond visible from the road.  We usually go in the right-hand drive around the pond and come out the opposite driveway.

Crown of the Carolinas… with Musician/Filmmaker Bobby Holliday

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Crown of the Carolinas: A place like none other

 “Home to more waterfalls than anywhere in the Appalachians… Host to the colors of autumn, one of the top-rated shows in the world… Beautiful mountains with four distinct seasons filled with wildlife, wildflowers & endless trails… If you’re a lover of the Carolinas, you are sure to find something here to love.” — Bobby Holliday

Join musician/filmmaker Bobby Holliday at Southern Wesleyan University in Central for the Upstate’s November program meeting when he presents portions of his DVD film, “Crown of the Carolinas.” Holliday and Bob McAnally produced the film beginning in 2006.

Filmed in high-definition, “Crown of the Carolina” showcases the area’s profusion of rare plants, such as the Oconee Bells, as well as skillfully photographed panoramas of the Blue Ridge Mountains, lakes, waterfalls, and wildlife. Holliday will talk about the abundance of outdoor activities available in our area and present some more recent work since the release of the DVD two years ago.

The presentation is open to the public and begins at 7:00 pm, November 17th, at Founders Hall in Dining Commons, Southern Wesleyan University in Central.