Curious about the plants that are growing on your property? Many questions may be swirling around your head- What kind are they? Are there any rare plants? Are they native or introduced? What about invasive plants?
I can accompany you on a laid back nature walk answering your questions and pointing out prominent species and important features of the landscape. These walks can be easily geared to an individual or groups.
Many common species of plants can be identified readily using Field Guides. However, groups of plants like the asters and sedges may require technical manuals, equipment like dissecting microscopes, and familiarity with specialized vocabulary to accurately identify the plant in question. I can advise you what type of material you would need to properly identify the plant; some ID’s can be done using detailed photographs, while others need a specimen of the plant with reproductive structures and information like where it was found (habitat type). Depending on the time of year and lifecycle stage of the plant, identification may not be possible until the next year. Even in the Winter, lots of plants can still be identified, especially woody material like trees and shrubs.
Lectures and Presentations
Native plants are my passion and I love nothing more then talking about them. I can present a generalized lecture or a customized one with a specific focus. Topics include a “These are the plants in your neighborhood” photo tour of some of our most noteworthy natives, propagating and growing native plants, identifying natives, using natives in your landscapes, invasive plant species, and so on.
Invasive Plant Management
Non-native, invasive plants can cause lots of problems in the landscape. In upland areas asiatic bittersweet, multiflora rose, Japanese knotweed, and glossy buckthorn can become established and seemingly engulf everything in their path. Common reed (a.k.a Phragmites) and purple loosestrife can turn a wetland into a monoculture in just a few short years. Don’t be too quick to condemn them with the “nuclear option”-herbicide treatment. Understand the situation first and what your objectives are. Depending on the action you take, you may make the situation worse.
All plants become established and thrive where they do for a reason and invasive plants are no different. More often then not our actions or those of others have inadvertently paved the way for the invading army to make land fall. Physical disturbances to our landscape like backfilling, top soil removal, and land clearing can greatly facilitate growth of some invasive non-native plants. Chemical disturbances to the soil and water and hydrological disturbances to wetlands can facilitate Phragmites and Purple loosestrife invasions.
I took on an interesting project in Oqunquit, Maine formulating an invasive plant management plan. Overwhelmed with the sheer volume of aggressive non-native plants like Morrow’s Honeysuckle, Bittersweet and a relative new-comer, Black swallowort, the Marginal Way Trail Committee needed to formulate a manageable, realistic, longterm plan. Scrubbing the length of this one mile long trail free of invasives is simply not feasible. We needed to focus on priority areas that still supported healthy native plant populations. These areas would be released of invasive plants and maintained as needed. Once these areas are “secure”, control efforts could be applied to other areas of the trail. Ideally, these reclaimed native areas would serve as educational stops and provide propagating material for restoration efforts.
A copy of this report can be found by clicking on “Marginal Way Trail Invasive Plant Management Plan”. Sensitive information on plant locations and other confidential data has been omitted.
Fees are based on services provided and to whom they are given to. For example- educational institutions, like elementary school nature walks are done at no charge. Plant identification using submitted photographs are also free of charge.
On site visits for private individuals and businesses will be charged based on distance traveled from home base, types of services requested (i.e. botanical inventory, plant identification, invasive species identification, etc., and follow up work. Please contact me directly with your specific interests and needs.