2nd annual Prairie Festival

2013 Prairie Festival postcBethany Springs Farm will host the 2nd Annual Prairie Festival near Hermann, Missouri on June 22 and 23, 2013

Join plein air artists or watch them paint, shop for fine art and crafts to benefit the Missouri Prairie Foundation, take in guided prairie botany walks, marionette show, family earth walks, and enjoy wine tasting and live acoustic music.

Art and nature lovers young and old are invited to a weekend of great art, prairie walks, and more at Bethany Springs Farm in Berger, Mo., June 22 and 23, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

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Joyful appreciation

Wild Ones volunteer at the 2013 Earth Day boothBy Fran Glass

Joyful appreciation is my experience each time I share my passion for native plant landscaping.  Hosting our Wild Ones booth at Earth Day in Forest Park has given me such opportunities for four consecutive years.

Some highlights include:

  • The delight and sense of wonder on children’s faces as they view photos of butterflies and insects on native plants.
  • The appreciation of adults who are eager and grateful for more information about native plants.
  • The homeowners who tell us how well our give-away shrub seedlings from previous years are growing.
  • The helpful volunteers who share my passion to spread our message.  You will have an opportunity to volunteer next year.  Come share the joy!

Landscape Challenge deadline fast approaching

This blogpost is meant to remind anyone who is eligible for this year’s Landscape Challenge that less than two weeks remain before the May 31 deadline for applications to be submitted.  As mentioned in an earlier blog post, this year’s challenge is open to St. Louis Audubon Society’s Bring Conservation Home (BCH) participants in St. Louis City and County who live outside the Deer Creek Watershed and who did not receive certification.

A beautiful yard landscaped with native plantsThe restriction that the BCH yard visit had to occur before April 1 has been removed, so if your yard visit occurred after that date, your property is now eligible.

BCH participants received recommendations on how to incorporate native plants into their yards and make other modifications to attract wildlife.  The Landscape Challenge winner will get help in filling some of those recommendations in their front yard.  The services of a professional designer, native plants and other landscaping material, and volunteers to install the landscape are all part of the winning package, conservatively valued at $1500 by the sponsoring organizations.
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May 2013 meeting minutes

Wild Ones members at the May 2013 meetingThe Sommett Place off Old Big Bend subdivision in Kirkwood was our meeting site.

President Ed Schmidt welcomed 8 guests and 29 members.

Announcements and Volunteer Opportunities

Betty Struckhoff discussed membership benefits.

St. Louis Earth Day Festival
Fran Glass thanked the 18 volunteers who staffed our educational booth at the Festival and wrapped 400 Missouri Department of Conservation seedlings to give away. There were a total of 26 volunteer shifts.

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April 2013 meeting minutes

BuyingTreesLittle Creve Coeur (Lake) Restoration Project site was our meeting location.

Betty Struckhoff offered the remaining shrub and tree seedlings from our group purchase.

President Ed Schmidt welcomed 23 members and one guest.

Announcements and Volunteer Opportunities

Crossroads School Rain Garden
Earlier this year we awarded a grant for native plants to Crossroads College Preparatory School for a front entrance rain garden enhancement.  They need a few volunteers to help plant the garden on April 6 at 9am for one-half day.

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Native Plant School newsletter, May 2013

Native Plant School logoThe May edition of the Native Plant School newsletter is out.  Topics include:

  • Red-shouldered hawks in the Whitmire Wildflower Garden
  • Gardening and plant care tips
  • Native plant highlight: Copper iris (Iris fulva)
  • Cindy Gilberg’s five favorite native plants

Download the PDF (1.2 MB)

To sign up for the newsletter, e-mail Besa Schweitzer (besa.schweitzer@mobot.org) with “NPS subscribe” in the subject line.

Seedling wrapping fun

Editor’s note: For the second year, Bill Brighoff hosted a seedling wrapping party in advance of our Earth Day give-away.  It has worked very well to wrap the seedlings ahead of time, rather than at the Earth Day booth.

By Diana Oleskevich

Wild Ones members with free seedlings at the 2013 Earth Day booth in Forest ParkYou may have missed it, but there’s another chance next year!  This was my first time to share in the “seedling wrap” afternoon at Bill’s house – what fun we had.  Bill was super-organized – he had shredded newspaper and big sheets pre-torn, plus an abundance of plastic bags and rubber bands to secure the baby Fragrant Sumac (Rhus aromatica) seedlings. Conversation was lively, the sun was warm and there were delicious goodies to share when the task was done.

I thought it would be daunting and probably a long afternoon, but no – time flew by as we talked about plants (of course) and a bit about life too and how we are so grateful.  I learned about past years at Earth Day with Wild Ones, and enjoyed the company.  Each of us did a little and together we finished 400 “wraps” – such a success. It was a good opportunity for me to laugh and learn, get to know Wild Ones folks better, and enjoy a productive afternoon in spring sunshine!