January Upstate Meeting: The Making of Peter’s Creek Heritage Trust Preserve in Spartanburg County
January 18 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
For our January presentation, meet Dr. Gillian “Gill” Newberry who is a trailblazer and local champion for rare plants and nature. While teaching at USC – Upstate for over 40 years, she developed and taught the General Biology series, Plant Taxonomy, and Plant Geography courses (amongst many others). She established the Upstate herbarium that now includes over 18,000 specimens, filled mostly by her contributions. But wait, there’s more! She also led research projects with students at the Peter’s Creek Heritage Preserve. This special area in Spartanburg County is now available to the public and preserved for generations thanks to Gill’s hard work that was sprinkled with a little luck.
During her presentation, you will hear the story of how she serendipitously found this 180-acre tract of land, discovered its many natural attributes including rare plant species, and how she overcame challenges to establish it as a heritage preserve. Peter’s Creek Heritage Preserve has many diverse ecosystems including streams with waterfalls, hardwood bottoms, agricultural areas, old mill sites, and the largest stand of Kalmia latifolia (Mountain laurel) in the county. Other plants include the federally-listed endemic Hexastylis naniflora (Dwarf-flowered heartleaf) and the endemic Nestronia umbellula (Indian olive). It has over 7 miles of trails that were blazed by Gill and her students for you to enjoy.
Come to learn about this heritage preserve and hear Dr. Gill Newberry’s story. See how one person can make a difference!