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The Triad Treasures Natural Diversity!

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Organized in January 2004, members come from Alamance, Forsyth, Guilford, Rockingham, Stokes, and other counties. All welcome!

Photo: Monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus, nectaring on New York iron weed, Vernonia noveboracensis, late summer 2014, by Judy Stierand. (click image for full-screen)

Monthly Meetings

Members receive announcements about Triad Chapter programs. All (members and non-members) are also welcome to join an informal Triad Yahoo! Group for sharing announcements about local and regional native plant events, resources, and photos: triadncwfps.

Please join us first Wednesdays of each month September through May for programs, plant sharing, and plant fun. Explore natural areas with us at any time of year (usually within a day’s drive). For further information, contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Meetings are at 7 p.m. at the Kathleen Clay Edwards Library, 1420 Price Park Dr., Greensboro, NC 27410 (phone 336-373-2923). All are welcome.


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Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Mark Garland—D**n Yellow Composites!

(7 p.m.--welcome early to say hello)


Mark Garland with Monster, by Yvette Garland


Hypochaeris radicata, hairy cat’s ear, by Mark Garland

In North Carolina, one in eight species of wild flowering plants is a member of the aster, daisy, or sunflower family—the Compositae or Asteraceae. From a possible origin in the southern hemisphere, the family has spread explosively all over the world and is now found on every continent (except Antarctica) and on most oceanic islands.  Worldwide, it includes over 24,000 species—about 10% of all species of flowering plants. The family includes some weeds like dandelion, ragweed, and thistles, but also plants with beautiful flowers, like sunflowers, asters, and coreopsis.  Learn a bit about where this family might have come from, the biology of the flower heads, how to tell whether or not a plant is a “comp,” and recognize some of the major groups within the family. And no, they’re not all yellow.

Mark Garland is a botanist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Plant Data Team in Greensboro.  He helps maintain the PLANTS database (https://plants.usda.gov), which assembles basic information about 30,000 native and naturalized species of vascular plants, mosses and liverworts, and lichens in North America north of Mexico, Hawaii, and U.S. possessions in the Caribbean and Pacific.  Mark has a degree in botany from the University of Georgia and did graduate work at Florida State University on the hawkweeds of eastern North America. He worked for the state of Florida for fifteen years, first at the Department of Environmental Protection and then as the state botanist for the state Department of Agriculture. He lives outside Greensboro with his wife Yvette and too many cats.

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Wednesday, December 04, 2019

Triad Member Native Plant Photo & Seed Exchange

(7 p.m.--welcome early to visit and check out seeds in the seed exhchange)


Members investigating the December 2018 seeds available, by Lynda Waldrep


Some of the offerings, by Robert Jones.


Join us to share photos, food, and stories of our native plant adventures and encounters. Members and anyone interested in native plants are welcome to all our meetings. Don’t worry if you haven’t been saving seeds—there are always plenty to share. If you have photos or food to share, please click on “Read More!”

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Wednesday, January 08, 2020

Adam Webb—Starting a Native Garden

(7 p.m.--welcome early to say hello)



(Lonicera sempervirens, coral honeysuckle, by Adam Webb)

Ever wonder how to start a native garden from scratch? Adam Webb,  Triad Chapter NCNPS member, did just that when he and his family moved into their Summerfield home.  Adam will share how he became interested in native plants and his eventual decision to move into the world of natives.  He will discuss techniques and methods tried, as well as resources and challenges involved in the process.

Adam and his family moved into their Summerfield home in the summer of 2015.  What started as a small butterfly garden soon turned into becoming a NWF Backyard habitat.  During that process he learned about the deep connection between native plants and wildlife.  After reading Larry Mellichamp’s book, NATIVE PLANTS OF THE SOUTHEAST, he discovered both the state and local NCNPS, becoming a member in 2016.

Note this is one week later than our usual meeting date since the library is closed on New Year’s Day.

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Wednesday, February 05, 2020

Alan Weakley—North Carolina’s Diverse Flora – Discoveries, Conservation, and Identification

(7 p.m.--welcome early to say hello)



(Gentiana autumnalis, Pinebarren Gentian, by Alan Weakley)

Understanding the natural diversity around us – our natural heritage – is more accessible than ever with new tools and technology.  But that natural diversity is also increasingly imperiled.  Learn about what makes North Carolina special, and new tools to appreciate and understand North Carolina’s plants and ecosystems.

Alan Weakley is a plant taxonomist, community ecologist, and conservationist specializing in the Southeastern United States.  He holds a B.A. from UNC-Chapel Hill and a Ph.D. from Duke University.  He has worked as botanist and ecologist for the N.C. Natural Heritage Program, and as regional and chief ecologist for The Nature Conservancy and NatureServe.  He is currently Director of the UNC Herbarium, a department of the N.C. Botanical Garden, and teaches as adjunct faculty at UNC-Chapel Hill and at the Highlands Biological Station. 

Alan is author of the Flora of the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic States, and co-author (with Chris Ludwig and Johnny Townsend) of the Flora of Virginia, which has received five awards, including the Thomas Jefferson Award for Conservation.  He is also co-author (along with Laura Cotterman and Damon Waitt) of Wildflowers of the Atlantic Southeast.

He has also released an app, FloraQuest, co-developed with Michael Lee and Rudy Nash, covering the Southeastern United States flora.  He has authored over 100 journal articles and book chapters, and is in high demand as a speaker on plant taxonomy, community classification and mapping, biogeography, and biodiversity conservation.  He is active with the Flora of North America project and the United States National Vegetation Classification, serves as an advisor to the N.C. Natural Heritage Program and N.C. Plant Conservation Program, and is a co-founder of the Carolina Vegetation Survey.  As a trustee and board member of public and private conservation granting agencies and foundations, he has helped oversee $400,000,000 of land conservation grants in the Southeastern United States.

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Past Programs

Triad NCNPS Dec2017 Member Slides.pdf




Chapter Activities


We have an annual member photo sharing meeting in December, where we also share seeds (and sometimes plants). Members often bring plants or other items as door prizes to monthly meetings. We also exchange plants in spring. In prep for our chapter's spring plant exchange, many members also pot up plants for the annual picnic plant sale that is a fundraiser for the scholarships the society provides to students for research and to attend the Cullowhee Native Plant Conference in July. The opportunity to participate in Cullowhee can be a transformative event for students, where they come into contact with an extraordinary mix of educators, growers, designers, and planners celebrating and promoting our fabulous native flora.



Extra Stuff


Triad Flora Report



Lisa Gould compiles a wonderful monthly Triad Flora report highlighting her native plant observations and those contributed by anyone in the community. It is a tremendously valuable tool for learning about our native (and introduced) flora in the wild, for exploring flowering times (and making a trip to go see something special or new to you!), for providing a record of our plant community through time, and for utilizing the knowledge and observational skills of our members. We will periodically post reports here Link to all the Flora Reports. Here is the link to the most recent Flora Report.

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Photos of Toad Trillium (Trillium cuneatum) and Virginia Heartleaf (Hexastyli virginica) are by Matthew Perry, included with the 31 March Flora Report.


To contribute to the Triad Flora report, send Lisa (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) your observations, including common name, scientific name (if possible), place observed (locale, town, county), date observed, stage (e.g., in bloom, in fruit, leaves only, etc.), and observer's name. Please report only for the following counties: Alamance, Caswell, Davidson, Davie, Forsyth, Guilford, Montgomery, Randolph, Rockingham, Stokes, Surry, and Yadkin.

Please include only plants that are in the wild (native or naturalized)—no garden plants. Species with an asterisk (*) are not native to our area but have naturalized here.

Nomenclature is from Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States, Working Draft of November 2012, by Alan S. Weakley, UNC Herbarium, Chapel Hill NC. Available as a free download (a searchable pdf) from: http://www.herbarium.unc.edu/flora.htm

Invasive species status [marked with an exclamation point and a number] is from the NC Native Plant Society's Invasive Exotic Plants in NC – 2010, which is available at http://www.ncwildflower.org/invasives/list.htm. The Society ranks invasive plants by the threat level: Rank 1 [!1] = Severe Threat, Rank 2 [!2] = Significant Threat, Rank 3 [!3] = Lesser Threat, Watch List A [!4] = naturalizing and may become a problem, Watch List B [!5] = known threat in other states but not yet a problem here. This list is a work-in-progress—if you have comments, go to the web link for information on how to provide feedback.

The reports are currently emailed to Triad members and posted on the plant society's members only pages, but more may be available here, as well, before long, so please stay tuned.... To join the Triad listserv, please visit triadncwfps or contact Nancy.

NC Friends of Plant Conservation
To support conservation of the wonderful flora of North Carolina, you can join or donate to NC Friends of Plant Conservation. The NC Plant Conservation Program's staff manages preserves across the state and contributions c/o the NC Friends of Plant Conservation are greatly appreciated for the program's work acquiring and managing these unique and tremendously special communities. To learn more about the program, visit http://www.ncplantfriends.org.

Comments, photos, or updates for this page can be sent to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).



Blog and Special Notes


Triad NCNPS Natives AWF 2017.pdf



Picture Albums


Tater Hill Trip Tater Hill Trip (August 02, 2008)
Green Swamp Green Swamp (May 21, 2005)

Chapter Contact(s)

Triad chapter contact information

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