Spring is in full swing!    Check out all the activities!
Healing the earth, one yard at a time

April 2017 Newsletter

In this edition:

Myths & Realities of Native Plants - April 10
Cane Creek Canyon Natural Preserve Weekend Trip - April 28-30
Spring Landscapes in Progress - April 29
New Member Orientation & Welcome Party - April 29
 Greenways Make Blueways - May 8


Rain Gardens & More - April 8
Native Edible & Medicinal Plants - May 13
Native Summer Flora of Forest & Fields - June 17

Crabtree Farms Spring Plant Sale
Birmingham Botanical Gardens Spring Plant Sale
Georgia Botanical Society Wildflower Pilgrimage 
Trails & Trilliums
Master Gardeners' Garden Expo
Great Smoky Mountains National Park Wildflower Pilgrimage
Reflection Riding Spring Native Plant Sale
...and more!





Photo above is Phlox divaricata
at Mt. Cuba Center


Myths and Realities of Native Plants
with Wilf Nichols

Monday, April 10, 2017
63 E. Main Street, Chattanooga TN
FREE and open to the public

Wilf Nichols was the director of the Memorial University (Newfoundland) Botanical Garden for 13 years after arriving from the University of British Columbia Botanical Garden and London.  For the past four years, he has been the director of the Botanical Garden of the University of Georgia in Athens. Accomplishments include building up their Certificate in Native Plants program and developing programs to increase the availability of native plants for sale in Georgia.  Wilf will talk about growing native plants including the pitfalls, pratfalls, and downfalls. 

Free on-street parking is available.  Paid parking lots are also available behind green|spaces and adjacent to the Chattanooga Choo Choo.

No pre-registration is necessary for this program.

Cane Creek Canyon Natural Preserve
and North Alabama Native Plant Sites
Weekend Field Trip
for Wild Ones Members

Friday-Sunday, April 28-30, 2017
FREE for Wild Ones Members only

Join other Wild Ones members for a memorable 3-day/2-night weekend trip to northwest Alabama to visit Cane Creek Canyon Natural Preserve and other sites in north Alabama during the near-peak spring wildflower season.

On Saturday, the group will go to Cane Creek Canyon Nature Preserve, a 713-acre privately protected scenic area in the Little Mountains region of Colbert County, Alabama. It serves as a sanctuary for native plants and animals and offers 11 miles of hiking as well as camping, picnicking, and creek wading. This remarkable area of natural beauty is still unspoiled largely due to an equally remarkable couple, Jim and Faye Lacefield. The retired educators bought a 40-acre tract of land in 1979 and have gradually added to that original purchase, keeping the land in its natural state.  The preserve includes a 60-foot waterfall, wetlands, sparkling streams rushing through boulder-strewn notches, sunny glades, sheer canyon walls and towering cliffs overlooking seas of hardwood forests. The canyon itself is steep and deep. In some places it is 350 feet from the rim to the clear blue-green waters of Cane Creek.

Based on participants' preferences, one of two sites will be visited enroute on Friday.  The Vernon  Bush Garden at Jackson County Park in Scottsboro should provide a  spectactular floral display and/or the Huntsville Botanical Gardens  with exceptional wildflower and shrub displays.

On Sunday morning, two sites will be available to visit: the Hall
Memorial Wildflower Garden located on the TVA Reservation and Deibert
Park which is a City of Florence Park.

Our trip will be led by Leon and Pat Bates.  Leon is retired as an urban forester/horticulturist (Florence, AL) and former senior botanist for TVA.  He is an avid hiker with the Cherokee Hiking Club, a leading wildflower, tree/shrub, and invasive plant hikes walks and a presenter of programs for local conservation groups. 

Participants will be responsible for the cost of their own lodging, meals and car transportation.   The group will depart from Chattanooga on Friday morning, April 28 and return on Sunday afternoon, April 30.  The trip is free and available for Wild Ones members only. Details regarding suggested lodging will be provided upon registration.   Limit: 15 participants.

Spring "Landscapes in Progress"
for Wild Ones Members

Saturday, April 29, 2017
9:00 am - 12:00 pm
FREE for Wild Ones Members only

Landscapes in Progress programs are seasonal events that are open to Wild Ones members only.  Our Spring Landscapes in Progress features three gardens of Wild Ones members on Missionary Ridge in Chattanooga. This event is an opportunity to learn about native plant gardening.  

Rather than a traditional "garden tour" where everything is perfect, LIP is an event where members -- host and visitor -- can ask questions, share information about their own endeavors, and spend time with others dedicated to landscaping with native species. Over time, we have re-visited some of the same gardens to witness the evolution and growth of a landscape, all in the name of becoming better gardeners.  

Registration for the Spring Landscapes in Progress is FREE and limited to 20 participants.  Sign up early to guarantee your spot at this popular event.

New Member Orientation & Welcome Party
for New Wild Ones Members

Saturday, April 29, 2017
12:00 - 2:00 pm
FREE for NEW Wild Ones Members only

We're always glad to have new members!  So, we'd like to invite anyone who has joined the Tennessee Valley Chapter in the last year to a  New Member Orientation and Welcome Party.  The  Welcome Party will be a casual event at the Missionary Ridge home of Lisa Lemza, our chapter President.  

If you're new to Wild Ones, we expect that you may have some questions about native plant gardening ... or perhaps you'd like the chance to meet others who share your interest in native plants ... or maybe you're curious about the programs and activities that our chapter offers.  

Here's what's planned:
  • Tour of Lisa's mostly native plant garden 
  • Native plant gardening Q&A
  • Info about upcoming programs and how to get involved
  • FREE pollinator-friendly plants for your own garden
  • FREE lunch and beverage will be provided
The  Welcome Party (12:00 - 2:00 pm) is scheduled at the conclusion of our  Spring Landscapes in Progress program (9:00 am - 12:00 pm) on April 29th.  

So that we know how many people to expect, please sign up by clicking the button below.  Closer to the time of the event, we'll send you driving directions and parking information.

Greenways Make Blueways:
Restoring Wetlands in the Tennessee Valley
with Dr. Bill Phillips

Monday, May 8, 2017
6:00 pm
63 E. Main St., Chattanooga
FREE and open to the public

Dr. Bill Phillips will discuss how he and his colleagues have restored nearly 45,000 feet of impaired stream banks and restored local wetlands in preparation of industrial sites like Volkswagen, Whirlpool, and Amazon.  He will also describe how nature trails based on high-quality aquatic assets are outstanding additions to residential developments.


We Need Your Help!

Volunteers are especially requested to help support Wild Ones at an avalanche of garden events in April and May. Please support an event, if you are able!  Volunteer hours will count for both Certificate of Native Plant and Master Gardener hours.

Duties for the Wild Ones public information table usually consist of friendly engagement with passersby to promote the Tennessee Valley Wild Ones.  YOU DO NOT HAVE TO "KNOW EVERYTHING!" Simply stating our mission and that, you, too are learning is enough.  There is extensive information and handouts available for all to browse.

Shift hours and details are available by clicking the button below.

Saturday, April 8 & 9
Crabtree Farm Plant Sale - public info table
2 persons per shift both days.

at the Hamilton County Master Gardeners Garden Expo - public info table
3 shifts Saturday & Sunday

Saturday, April 15 
Work day (9am-12pm)at Reflection Riding at the Wild Ones' Pollinator Garden --l ight work, such as weeding and re-planting bare spots

Thursday- Saturday, April 20-22
Reflection Riding Spring Plant Sale - public info table
2 hour shifts throughout the sale, as posted in the link

Saturday, April 29 
Bachman Community Center Home & Garden Show - public info table
2 to 2.5 hour shifts
Note: this is also the day of the Spring Landscapes in Progress tour , the  New Member Welcome Party , AND the Cane Creek Preserve excursion.  Please s ee details for those events elsewhere in this newsletter.

Please consider volunteering at least a few hours to help spread the word and save the world, one landscape at a time.  

Certificate in Native Plants Classes

Spring Programs are Almost Full!

The Certificate in Native Plants program is designed to expand students' knowledge of botany, ecology, conservation, and uses of native flora in the southeastern United States. Students will get both classroom education and hands-on application to increase knowledge and skills that can be applied at home, in the community, and at work. The course setting will provide a common ground for native plant enthusiasts to meet and connect with others who share their interests. 

The CNP is designed to benefit both home gardeners and landscaping professionals alike.  You do NOT need to be working toward the Certificate in order to register for classes.

CNP classes are limited to 25 participants.  They fill up quickly, so register now to ensure your place. Note: The May CNP class on Native Edible & Medicinal Plants is sold out.

Click the buttons below for program details and registration.

Rain Gardens and More
Instructor: Wyn Miller
Saturday, April 8, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m
Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center
ELECTIVE Class (4 credits)

Native Summer Flora of Forest and Fields
Instructor: John Manion
Saturday, June 17, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m
Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center
ELECTIVE Class (4 credits)

Spring Events in the Region

Mark Your Calendar for These Spring Events!

April is always a busy time in the Tennessee Valley and surrounding areas, with plant sales, hikes and other activities for native plant gardeners and outdoor enthusiasts.    Here's a sampling of events scheduled for 2017.   Be sure to check the  "Community and Regional Events"  page of our website (drop down menu under "Programs") for updates on these and other activities.  

Crabtree Farms Spring Plant Sale
Thursday-Sunday, April 6-9

Birmingham Botanical Gardens
Spring Plant Sale
Thursday-Sunday, April 6-9 

Wildflower Pilgrimmage in Chattanooga Area
Georgia Botanical Society
Friday-Sunday, April 7-9

Trails & Trilliums
Sewanee, TN
Friday-Sunday, April 7-9

Master Gardeners of Hamilton County
"Master Your Garden" Garden Expo
Camp Jordan Arena, East Ridge TN
Saturday & Sunday, April 8-9

Spring Wildflower Walk
with Christine Bock-Hunt
in Rising Fawn, GA
A program of the Tennessee Aquarium
Sunday, April 9
2:00 - 5:00pm

Great Smoky Mountain National Park 
Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage
Tuesday - Saturday, April 11-15

Growing Native Orchids
Wild Ones Smoky Mountains Chapter
Kodak TN
Thursday, April 13

An Evening with Author, David Haskell
Tuesday, April 18, 7:00pm
UTC Benwood Auditorium

Reflection Riding Spring Native Plant Sale
Thursday, April 20 - Members Only
Friday & Saturday, April 21-22 - Open to the Public

Inaugural Botanical Walk, Inventory & Assessment
with Dr. Richard K. Clements
Saturday, April 22, 8:00am
McCoy Farm & Gardens
Signal Mountain TN

Overhill Gardens Open House
Saturday & Sunday, April 28 & 29
Vonore TN

Bachman Community Center Home & Garden Show
Sunday, April 29
Signal Mountain TN


Tennessee Valley Chapter of Wild Ones Announces 

Award:  up to $500 (may be divided among several candidates or given to one)

Expectation:  Awardee(s) will exhibit potential for leadership in native plant community restoration and sustainable landscaping efforts, to include active engagement in Tennessee Valley Chapter of Wild Ones mission and activities.  

Eligibility:  Anyone demonstrating interest in native plants and their landscape use-- through horticulture, botany, ecology, landscape architecture/design, education, community volunteering, or a related field -- is encouraged to apply. We hope to support students, interns in the field, teachers, government workers, environmental activists and native plant advocates, and students.

A judicated by :  Executive Committee, Tennessee Valley Chapter of Wild Ones

Deadline:  A pplication/request, including personal statement and description of eligibility, must be submitted to Bill Moll at whmoll@aol.com by 6/1/17.

Symposium Weekend in the Rear View Mirror

March 17-18 was an action-packed weekend for our chapter with the Friday sold-out hands-on design workshop with Claudia West; the Friday night dinner with Symposium speakers; and Saturday Plant Natives 2017 Symposium and Native Plant Marketplace & Expo.  This was our 6th annual symposium, and this year broke all previous attendance records.  Nearly 30 members of our chapter generously volunteered their time to make the weekend a success.  A big thanks goes out to Connie Giles and Bill Moll, "Co-Chairs Extraordinaire" of 2017 Plant Natives!

Wild Ones Book Group

On March 25th, the first gathering of the Wild Ones Book Group took place at the home of Ann Brown.  The gro up even at tracted visitors from Nashville - Pam & Mike Swoner - who learned about the book discussion at the Symposium.  The discussion about Peter Wohlleben's The Hidden Life of Trees was lively and very interesting, and included thoughts about the pros and cons of the anthropomorphic depiction of trees by the author.  Bill Moll, the discussion leader, brought books for further reading on this topic, including Daniel Chamowitz's What a Plant Knows and Malcolm Wilkins' Plantwatching: How Plants Remember, Tell Time and Form Partnerships.

A Missing Book at the Symposium

If you purchased a copy of Claudia West's Planting in the Post Wild World in the afternoon at the March 18th Symposium, and the book is autographed by Claudia for "Belinda," could you please please let us know by emailing tnvalleywildones@gmail.com.  The book was picked up in the auditorium and accidentally sold to another person.  We will be happy to exchange the book for a clean copy, so that Belinda can have her book back.  :-)


The Seasons Aren't What They Used to Be
"Spring has been particularly hasty and irregular this year, but this is no anomaly. In the latter half of the 20th century, the spring emergence of leaves, frogs, birds and flowers advanced in the Northern Hemisphere by 2.8 days per decade."  Read more in this article by David George Haskell.

David Haskell Speaks for the Trees  
David Haskell, the Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of The Forest Unseen, spent two years visiting 12 sites around the world for an ambitious new book that reveals the surprising-and surprisingly fascinating-arboreal secrets hidden in the canopies of ordinary trees. Paul Kvinta meets with the real-life Lorax on New York's Upper West side and learns surprising facts about the Bradford pear in his book, 
The Songs of Trees: Stories from Nature's Great Connectors, which comes out in April. Read a preview.


Bloodroot flower and Flower Fly on March 24, 2017.
The Flower Fly is not a wasp although it resembles one. Note: short antennae, eyes larger proportional to body, single pair of wings, all characteristics of a fly. It was all over this flower.
(Photo by Mike O'Brien)

Sassafras tree flowers
(Photo by Mike O'Brien)

Bumble Bee proboscis entering 
native azalea (Rhododendron arborescens) for nectar
(Photo by Mike O'Brien)

Sweetshrub (Calycanthus floridus) 
with characteristic paired blossoms
(Photo by Mike O'Brien)


Become a Wild Ones Member!
Join the Tennessee Valley Chapter

See what's happening on our social media sites:

Wild Ones: Native Plants. Natural Landscapes is a national non-profit organization with over 50 chapters in 13 states that promotes environmentally sound landscaping practices to preserve biodiversity through the preservation, restoration and establishment of native plant communities. Please read more information about Wild Ones at www.wildones.org.
The Tennessee Valley Chapter presents guest speakers, field trips and other special events throughout the year, as well as an annual native plant and natural landscaping symposium in early spring. 
To contact our chapter, email us at tnvalleywildones@gmail.com