October 2019 Newsletter
Healing the earth, one yard at a time.
Monthly Public Meetings
Native Plant Seed Collection
with Lucy Ellis
Monday, October 14 at 6:00 pm
Warner Park Fitness Center Parking Lot
1254 E 3rd St, Chattanooga, TN 37404
FREE and open to the public

Come prepared for a hands on experience at Warner Park where over 80 native plant species thrive in an urban landscape. Learn about the ethics of wild collection, techniques to catch seeds before they disperse, and safe storage. Take home your own Rudbeckia hirta (Black-eyed Susan) seeds. (Certificate in Native Plant students can gain volunteer credit!)

Meet in the parking lot between the Fitness Center and the Recycle Center. Look for a white truck with City decal.
Tennessee Valley Chapter
2019 Annual Meeting
FREE buffet lunch and beverages
Native Plant & Seed Sharing
Preview of 2020 Programs
Election of 2020 Officers

Saturday, November 2nd, 10:00am - 1:00pm
Crabtree Farms
1000 E. 30th St., Chattanooga TN
FREE for members of the Tennessee Valley Chapter of Wild Ones

After a brief recap of another great year of programs and events, we will provide a preview of 2020. Learn how you can become more involved in YOUR chapter and make some new friends. We will hold our election of officers and Board members and approve bylaw changes. Lunch will be provided for all chapter members who pre-register. Bring a native plant or some seeds for a swap, and go home with something new to try in your landscape.
Tennessee Valley Chapter
Holiday Potluck Social
Monday, December 9th at 6:00 pm
63 E. Main St., Chattanooga TN
FREE and open to members of the Tennessee Valley Chapter of Wild Ones

Save the date!
More details coming soon!
Registration for October & November
CNP Classes is Now Open!

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. The CNP offers a blend of classroom instruction, hands-on learning and guided hikes. Participants are required to complete four core classes, eight electives, and 40 hours of volunteering for approved native plant projects. Visit  www.TNValleyWildOnes.org/CNP  for more information.  Classes are open to Wild Ones members and non-members, whether or not you are pursuing the certificate.  

NOTE:    Two of the required core classes, Plant Form and Function I and II (also known as Botany I and II), are being held in October and November and will not be offered again until 2021. 

CNP class sizes are limited and registration IN ADVANCE is required.

Plant Form & Function:
Part 1
Saturday, October 12, 2019
9:00am – 4:00pm
Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center
Instructors: Richard Clements, Ph.D. 
Mary Priestley
CNP Core Class – 6 credits

Plant Form & Function:
Part 2
Saturday, November 9, 2019
9:00am – 4:00pm
Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center
Instructors: Richard Clements, Ph.D.
Mary Priestley
CNP Core Class – 6 credits

September CNP Class Learns Landscape Photography
with Paul Moore
Professional photographer, Paul Moore (center) instructed the CNP Native Landscape Photography class at Reflection Riding Arboretum and Nature Center last month. Participants now have a better understanding of light and composition and what goes into making great images.
Paul demonstrated how to capture a great landscape photo while avoiding unwanted objects in the foreground.
“Conservation is getting nowhere because it is incompatible with our Abrahamic concept of land. We abuse land because we regard it as a commodity belonging to us. When we see land as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect.”

- Aldo Leopold

Fall Native Plant Sales
Saturdays during October, 10am - 2pm
Chattanooga TN

November 9
Fall hours: Saturdays 10am - 2pm, September 21- November 2
Canton GA

Local & Regional Happenings
Seeds On Ice:
Conserving Diversity in a Time of Change and Challenge
Featuring Dr. Cary Fowler
Monday, October 7, 4:30-5:30pm
Montgomery Bell Academy, Lowry Building
Nashville YN
Free and open to the public

Dr. Fowler is perhaps best known as the "father" of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, described by former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon as an "inspirational symbol of peace and food security for the entire humanity." The Seed Vault provides ultimate security for more than 850,000 unique crop varieties, the raw material for all future plant breeding and crop improvement efforts. He proposed the creation of this Arctic facility to Norway, headed the international committee that developed the plan for its establishment, and now chairs the international council that oversees its operations. View the TedTalk.

Presented by The Garden Club of Nashville in conjunction with the Southeastern Grasslands Initiative.
Hidden Rivers
Film Screening
November 9
Details coming
Save the date!

Ten years in the making, Hidden Rivers is a new feature film that explores the rivers and streams of the Southern Appalachian region, North America’s most biologically rich waters. The film follows the work of conservation biologists and explorers throughout the region, and reveals both the beauty and vulnerability of these ecosystems.
Record & Learn About Plants at Reflection Riding
Reflection Riding is on a mission to record all the flora and fauna on its beautiful 317-acre nature preserve. While there are several native animals in the exhibits, the vast majority of the wildlife can be found out on the property. From rare native flowers to migratory birds, you can see what has been found on the property.

Reflection Riding has an active project on iNaturalist where you can see the observations other visitors and staff have made on the property. Whether you recognize the species or not, you can submit photos or audio files, and the community will help identify your observation. Additionally, you'll be sharing data with the larger scientific community that can be used later for research. Please obscure the location of sensitive or endangered species. Anything you capture on our property will be automatically added to the iNaturalist project! Join in the fun from the iNaturalist app or on the website.
Rain Garden Guardians
Do you have an interest in doing some hands-on gardening? Do you want to learn more about rain gardens?

On the first (1st) and fourth (4th) Thursday of the month, a Rain Garden Guardians work day will
be scheduled at:
10/24 - Renaissance Rain Garden

These public rain garden sites are designed to catch polluted stormwater runoff. Through
natural processes these sites protect our waterways and citizens by filtering water, reducing
flooding, and providing habitat. Each site is a little different; explore a new native plant
landscape each week!
Interesting Information
Tennessee Makes Way
for the Monarchs
The Tennessee Department of Transportation ... now practices swath mowing, a strategy that allows wildflowers to bloom unmolested in rural areas till after the first frost. Instead of clearing the entire space between the road and the right-of-way fence, mowers clear only a 16-foot-wide area next to the road.

Birds Are Vanishing
From North America
The skies are emptying out.

The number of birds in the United States and Canada  has fallen by 29 percent since 1970 , scientists reported on Thursday. There are 2.9 billion fewer birds taking wing now than there were 50 years ago.

The analysis, published in the journal Science, is the most exhaustive and ambitious attempt yet to learn what is happening to avian populations. The results have shocked researchers and conservation organizations.

Photos from the Field
Mist Flower ( Conoclinium coelestinum )
Photo by Mike O'Brien.

Narrow-Leaf Sunflower ( Helianthus augustifolius )
Photo by Mike O'Brien.

Giant Swallowtail Caterpillar on Hop Tree Leaf
This still-growing caterpillar (approximately 1.25" long) was spotted this week.
Photo by Mike O'Brien.

Giant Swallowtail caterpillar extending its protective osmeterium organ
  It has a forked appearance, not unlike a snake’s tongue and emits a noxious chemical with a foul odor. This forked appearance, along with its eye spots can fool would-be predators. This organ remains within the body of the caterpillar and is only extended when disturbed. It is most protective in its earlier growth stages against ants, spiders and mantids. (The manufactured and stored secretions of the osmeterium contain monoterpene hydrocarbons, sesquiterpenic compounds or aliphatic acids and esters.)
Say those compounds fast 10 times!
Photo by Mike O'Brien.

Beechdrops (Epifagus virginianus)
Mike O'Brien's friend and spider mentor, Professor William Michael Howell of Samford University in Birmingham, AL, sent this wonderful photo of the parasitic plant, Beechdrops and encouraged Mike to read about it. The photo was taken by Dr, Howell in the Cahaba River area in Birmingham, AL. 

Mike learned that Beechdrops (  Epifagus   virginianus ) is a parasitic, non-chlorophyll containing plant that inserts a root-like structure, called an haustorium, into the root of a Beech tree and the plant takes just enough nutrients for its own growth. Since it is an annual, it does not harm the host Beech. Its growth is mostly underground until late summer when it produces its flower stalk, which withers by November. The flowers are pollinated by flying insects and the top-most flowers produce small seeds which are thought to be rain disseminated. These seeds germinate the following spring and restart the growth cycle. In late summer (August - October), look under large or small American Beech Trees to find these Beechdrop flower stalks that may blend in with the grass. These plants are found from Ontario to Florida and west as far as Louisiana. 

Thank you Dr. Howell for providing us with your photo and Mike for sharing information about this interesting plant.

Summer Azure on Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum)
On a late September afternoon, Mike O'Brien stood for 10 minutes by a large stand of Boneset plants. During this short time, he photographed this Summer Azure Butterfly, as well as a Red-banded Hairstreak Butterfly, a Scolia dubia wasp, a male Dun Skipper, a Metallic Sweat Bee, a Mason Wasp, and an Alianthus Webworm Moth (an introduced species). There were a number of other visiting pollinators that weren't photographed! The Yellow Bear Caterpillar below was also spotted on this plant.
Up close, the Boneset flowers have a very strong honey scent, which is a real pollinator-magnet!
Photo by Mike O'Brien.

Yellow Bear Caterpillar on Eupatorium perfoliatum.
Photo by Mike O'Brien.

Stay Connected
Visit Our Website at TNValleyWildOnes.org

Join our Meetup group to stay current about upcoming programs, classes and events.
"Like" our public Facebook page, and stay up to date on our events and interesting information about native plants and natural landscaping.
Join our Facebook GROUP, where you can ask questions about native plants, join discussions and learn more about native plants and natural landscaping.