California Native Plant Society

CNPS eNewsletter

January 2017

CNPS 2018 Conservation Conference

2018 logoPlanning is underway for the upcoming CNPS Conservation Conference, February 1-3, 2018, in Los Angeles. Check out our schedule of conference sessions available now!

Big thanks to the Abstracts Team for getting our abstract submission system set up! The Call for Abstracts is open! We encourage students, researchers, and other professionals to submit an abstract to give a talk in one of the themed sessions or present a poster during the conference. Visit the link above for more information, requirements, and to submit an abstract.

Planning will be ramping up over the next six months. We will be seeking pre-conference workshop and field trip proposals soon, so stay tuned if you’re interested in leading one. Sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities will also be available shortly if you work for an organization or agency who’d like to support this big event. If you’d like to get involved personally, we’ll be looking for volunteers to help with both planning and on-site tasks too. Stay tuned for lots more coming your way! Registration for the conference and all associated events is expected to open in July.

Questions? Contact Becky Reilly at . We’ll see you in LA!


Certification - A Step Forward for Botany

Bot CertThis is the first in our series on the new CNPS Consulting Botanist Certification Program. In the coming weeks, we’ll be addressing some of the top questions we’re hearing about the program to date on the CNPS Blog. First, we start with the Why. Why do we need a certification program, and why should someone go to the trouble of getting certified?

To help answer this question, we spoke with Dan Klemann, deputy director of long range planning for the Santa Barbara County Planning and Development Department. Dan has been instrumental in working with two of the most forward-thinking planning departments in the state and shares his perspective on challenges and possible solutions toward effective environmental review in the planning process. 

Continue reading here.


Revisiting a Rare Plant Population Just in Time

Arctostaphylos refugioensisDavid Magney, CNPS Rare Plant Program Director

After conducting a rare plant survey near Santa Ynez in June of 2016, I took the opportunity to revisit several of the occurrences of Arctostaphylos refugioensis, Refugio Manzanita. This species is classified as a rare plant, assigned to the CNPS California Rare Plant Rank 1B.2.

There are only five known occurrences, all of them at the upper end of Refugio Canyon and an adjacent ridge top in the Santa Ynez Mountains. Before my visit, there had been no recent reports for CNPS or the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Natural Diversity Database (CNDDB) in over 20 years. So, needless to say, I decided to see how they were doing. I had last seen this species on a Botany class field trip taught by the late UCSB Professor J.R. (Bob) Haller. That was back in the early 1980s.

Continue reading here.


2017 Plant Science Workshops

RA Workshop

In small classes taught by subject matter experts, CNPS workshops provide science-backed education and hands-on experience in beautiful locales. The CNPS Plant Science Training Program is gearing up for an exciting season of workshops in 2017, all of which are now open for registration! Further details, including a list of all upcoming workshops, and registration information are available here. Contact Becky Reilly at for more information.

Vegetation Mapping
March 1-3, Redlands
Taught by Julie Evens, Todd Keeler-Wolf, John Menke
$665 CNPS Members, $695 Non-Members

Introduction to Plant Identification, Part II: A Beginner Look at Nine Plant Families - Northern CA
April 4-6, Auburn
Taught by Josie Crawford
$375 CNPS Members, $395 Non-Members

Introduction to Plant Identification, Part I: A Beginner Look at Eight Plant Families - Southern CA
April 18-20, Frazier Park & Tejon Ranch
Taught by Nick Jensen & Sandy Namoff
$395 CNPS Members, $415 Non-Members

San Luis Obispo County Flora
May 2-4, San Luis Obispo area
Taught by David Keil
Details and registration coming soon.

Introduction to Plant Identification, Part I: A Beginner Look at Eight Plant Families - SF Bay Area
May 17-19, Berkeley
Taught by Josie Crawford
$375 CNPS Members, $395 Non-Members

Rare Plant Survey Protocols
June 7-8, Redding
Taught by Heath Bartosh & Aaron Sims
$399 CNPS Members, $429 Non-Members

Vegetation Rapid Assessment/Relevé
October 3-5, Bodega Bay
Taught by Jennifer Buck-Diaz & Anne Klein
$375 CNPS Members, $395 Non-Members; +$265 for onsite meals & lodging (optional)


Chapter Events - A Sampling from Around the State

To connect to your local chapter, or to find other events in your region, see this page for a list and map of CNPS chapters. Even more events from CNPS chapters and partners can be viewed on the Horticulture Events Calendar

Marin Chapter
Workshop: Create a Pollinator Garden
Saturday, February 4, 10:00 a.m. - 02:00 p.m.

Hosted by SPAWN (Salmon Protection and Watershed Network) and the CNPS Marin Chapter. Held at SPAWN / Turtle Island Restoration (9255 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, Olema, CA 94950). For more information, or to RSVP, contact Audrey at or at 415.663.8590 x 106.

San Gabriel Mountains Chapter
Eaton Canyon Plant Walks
Sunday, February 12, 9 a.m.

Meet in front of Eaton Canyon Nature Center at 9:00 a.m. Then go on a leisurely walk, about two hours, through the native plant garden that surrounds the Center and into the nearby wild areas. 1750 N. Altadena Dr, Pasadena, CA 91107.

Los Angeles/Santa Monica Chapter
Program Meeting: Invasive Plant Spread in the Santa Monica Mountains
Tuesday, February 14, 7:30 - 9pm

Dr. Irina Irvine will describe the current state of invasive plant spread and what the National Park Service is doing about it. She will discuss new statewide tools for tracking, prioritizing, and reporting new species and watch list species, emphasizing the need for volunteer weed warriors and which infested areas in the Santa Monica Mountains most need our help. Dr. Irina Irvine is a restoration ecologist on the staff of the National Park Service in the Santa Monica Mountains. First United Methodist Church, 1008 11th Street, Fireside Room, Santa Monica.

Santa Cruz County Chapter
Field Trip: Ferns of Fall Creek
Saturday, February 18, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Come frolic in the forest of Fall Creek on a fern foray. Join Deanna Giuliano on a fern hunt: we will try and locate most of the 15 species of ferns that grow in the park. Hike will be leisurely about 2.5 miles. Trip is from 10-2 bring water, layers, and a lunch. Meet at the State Park parking lot on Felton Empire Rd in Felton. The first 10 people to show up get a key to the native ferns of Santa Cruz County! Carpooling is encouraged, but not CNPS sponsored. Contact Deanna Giuliano at for any questions at 831 278-2699.

Milo Baker Chapter
Field Trip: Salmon Creek Rd., Bodega
Saturday, February 18, 10 a.m.

Meet at junction of Salmon Creek Rd. and Fitzpatrick Rd., about 2 miles west from the town of Bodega. Leader: Peter Warner ( ), botanical/ecological consultant and educator. This will be a leisurely walk along a very easy grade, relatively quiet country road, with focus on identifying late winter wildflowers and flowering shrubs. Notable among the latter is western leatherwood (Dirca occidentalis; CA rare plant rank 1B.2); the population along the road is the furthest north documented. We’ll also look for pink-flowering currant, osoberry, willows, and other woodies early to rise for the coming spring. Bring a lunch and water; ticks and poison-oak are likely encountered hazards. About two miles of very easy walking.

Sanhedrin Chapter
Valley View Trail Hike, Cow Mountain Recreation Area
Sunday, February 19th, 10 a.m.

Joint trip with our local chapter of the Sierra Club, this trip is a mixed hike with light botanizing. We'll see the first blooms of spring in the chaparral of Cow Mountain and also experience the gushing splendor of a waterfall in a fern canyon. We will first hike up the ridge, lunch, and then enter the canyon. Wear sturdy shoes, dress in layers. Class M-7-B. Heavy rain cancels, rain showers are a go. Meet 10 a.m. at trailhead across from Mill Creek Park near the town of Talmage (immediately east of Ukiah).. For more information, or to RSVP, contact Yvonne Kramer at .

Monterey Bay Chapter
Field Trip: Toro Park Early Wildflowers
Tuesday, February 21, 9:45 a.m.

We’ll depart from the dirt parking area outside Toro Park (map). This 5.5 mile hike with 600 feet elevation gain has a delightful variety of wildflowers: Indian warriors, footsteps of spring, shooting stars are just a few. Bring water and lunch. Arrive early; we depart at 9:45am from the dirt parking area outside Toro Park. Call for a reservation—limit of 8. Leader: Lynn Bomberger, 375-7777.

San Diego Chapter
Program Meeting: A new cactus species from the California desert
Thursday, February 23, 7:30 p.m.

Cylindropuntia chuckwallensis is a newly-described cactus found in San Bernardino, Riverside, and northern Imperial Counties, California. Michelle Cloud-Hughes’s presentation describes how this historically-misidentified cholla was determined to be a distinct new species and the characteristics that distinguish it from similar cholla species. This presentation will provide detailed information on where to see “the chucky cholla” as well as many other intriguing succulents found in the same areas. Room 101, Casa del Prado, Balboa Park, San Diego.

Shasta Chapter
Field Trip: Bailey Cove and Waters Gulch Trails
Saturday, February 25, 9 a.m.

Bailey Cove is an easy, mostly level loop trail, just under three miles, Because the different aspects of the trail cover all four points of the compass, we will see how solar radiation and slope affect the type of plants that grow on the trail. Then we’ll hit the trailhead of the Waters Gulch Trail to see Shasta maidenhair fern (Adiantum shastense) and Shasta snowreath (Neviusia cliftonia), which will not be in bloom yet. No dogs, please. Meet at the Mt. Shasta Mall parking lot near Chase Bank in Redding at 9 am. For more information, contact David Ledger at 530/355-8542. No collecting allowed on fieldtrip

Orange County Chapter
Field Trip Anza-Borrego Desert State Park
Sunday, February 26, 9 a.m.

Anza-Borrego is California’s largest State Park and is rich in botanical treasures, especially spring wildflowers. Desert bloom is always a very unpredictable thing, with blooms varying in timing, location and intensity every year and even from week to week. Please visit this site regularly for any date changes on this trip. Meet promptly at 6:30 am at Bravo Burger parking lot or meet at the Anza-Borrego Visitors Center at 9 am. The Visitor’s Center is located at 200 Palm Canyon Drive, Borrego Springs. $10 donation to OC CNPS requested. Leaders: Diane Etchison and Rachel Whitt.


Contributors and Photo Credits

  • Kate Cooper
  • David Magney
  • Catherine Curley
  • Becky Reilly
  • Mark Naftzger
  • Stacey Flowerdew
  • Liv O'Keeffe
  • Botanists in the field - David Magney
  • Refugio manzanita - David Magney
  • Rapid Assessment Workshop Participants - Becky Reilly



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