Botanical related vendors and groups will be set up at the symposium with information about their programs across Georgia.  A wonderful opportunity for you to purchase topical books and have books authored by our speakers autographed by them too. Learn about Pitcher Plant Bogs from the GA DNR and work by the UGA EcoScapes program during the breaks. Native Rhododendrons and host larval plants for our Georgia butterflies will be available for purchase.  Nature inspired artists will be showcasing and selling their work including but not limited to handcrafted pottery by Michelle Eifert and paintings by our own Linda Fraser.  Spend the day with us in Macon and REGISTER NOW for this day of learning February 4, 2017.

Working with Nature 2017 GNPS Symposium



This planting combines species with different metabolisms and underground morphologies.

claudiawest-111x144CLAUDIA WEST  I  Planting in a Post-Wild World
BIO: Claudia West is a landscape designer and consultant based in Whitehall, MD who speaks regularly on her plant community-based strategies of design, management and functional planting for green infrastructure, and natural color theories.
9:00 AM PRESENTATION: We live in a global city where few wild places remain in today’s world. Planting designers have the opportunity and responsibility to bring wildness and ecological value back into our landscapes. Join us as we explore how native plants will fit into our future landscape and how plant community-based design strategies that can help you meet aesthetic and ecological goals during your next planting project.

leslieedwards-111x144LESLIE EDWARDS  I  Plant Communities: Rooted in Geology

Green Pitcher Plant, Sarracenia oreophila

Blue Ridge Green Pitcherplant, Sarracenia oreophila

BIO: Dr. Leslie Edwards is lead author of “The Natural Communities of Georgia” and a retired GSU Geosciences professor. She now teaches and leads walks highlighting Georgia’s diverse natural communities.

10:45 AM PRESENTATION: Why does a plant community with rhododendron and pipsissewa flourish in one place, while a community with sugar maple and columbine grows in another? Because rock types vary in terms of the nutrients, acidity, and the moisture of the soils that develop from them. Learn how Georgia’s geology affects which plant communities grow where, and how you can apply that knowledge to help choose the right plants for your own garden or preserve.

thomasrainer-111x144THOMAS RAINER  I  Creating and Managing a Plant Community – Creative Approaches to Site Preparation, Installation, and Maintenance

Complex plant communities only persist if designers and land managers collaborate.

Complex plant communities only persist if designers and land managers collaborate.

BIO: Thomas Rainer is a registered Landscape Architect, teacher, and writer, and associate principal at Rhodeside & Hartwell. He specializes in applying innovative planting concepts to create low-input, dynamic, colorful and ecologically functional designed landscapes.

1:00 PM  PRESENTATION: The tried and true axioms that guide preparation, installation, and management arise from a belief that we should be able to place any kind of plant anywhere. Unique characteristics of soil like high pH or infertility are eradicated in favor of creating a generic, potting-soil-like medium. Many of these widely accepted and blindly applied techniques actually undermine plant establishment and the long-term health of a planting. Learn how to use a plant’s natural growing cycle to speed up establishment, minimize plant loss, and reduce unnecessary maintenance.

susanmeyers-111x144SUSAN MEYERS  I  Monarchs and Milkweeds Across Georgia

Monarch enjoying the pollen on Joe Pye Weed

Monarch enjoying the pollen on Joe Pye Weed, Eutrochium

BIO: Susan is a Trainer for the University of Minnesota’s Monarch Larva Monitoring Project (MLMP), a Conservation Specialist for Monarch Watch based at the University of Kansas, and routinely raises, tags and tests Monarchs for Project Monarch Health, a citizen science program based at the University of Georgia.

2:15 PM PRESENTATION: With the possible listing of the Monarch under the Endangered Species Act, a closer look at this iconic species’ annual cycle (breeding, migration, and overwintering) is warranted. What are the reasons for the decline in its population? What remediation can be accomplished? Although much of the national focus is on habitat restoration in the Midwest migration corridor, Georgia and the Southeast have the potential to boost the population by increasing public awareness and the availability of our native milkweeds, habitat restoration and citizen science data collection efforts.

karenrawlins-111x144KARAN RAWLINS  I  How You Can Make A Difference: Invasive Species, Native Plantings, Citizen Science

Little Sweet Betsy, Trillium cuneatum

Little Sweet Betsy,
Trillium cuneatum

BIO: Karan Rawlins is the Invasive Species Coordinator and the Bugwood Images Coordinator at the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health at the University of Georgia.
3:00 PM PRESENTATION: We can make a difference to the ecosystems, which sustain us and our families, today and into the future. No single person can do everything, but every single person can do something. There are many conservation projects across our state. Look at current and potential projects dealing with both invasive and native species around our beautiful state. Find the project that speaks to you and you will make a difference.




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