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tation on local spring wildflowers
by botany professor Dennis Ander-
son (who would later lead a trip to
Hawaii in 1972). A total of 28 mem-
bers signed up at this first meeting,
and in April of 1970 several mem-
bers attended the first field trip.
The Stony Creek trail off of
State Route 199 in the Smith River
area was their destination. Along
with many other species, one of the
highlights of this trail is a view of
the California pitcher plant (Dar-
lingtonia californica
), a rare plant in
California (CNPS List 4 species).
This trip, although rainy, was en-
joyable for all attendees and became
an annual event in subsequent years.
Sometimes a sheet cake was
packed along to celebrate the birth-
day of Earl Rumble (Virginia
Rumble's husband). It was on some
of these earlier excursions that folks
learned the field survey method
chapter members called "40 mph
taxonomy," or the skill of identify-
ing plants from a moving car. Earl,
a truck driver on occasion, became
so adept at this method that he
would point out shrubs and flowers
in bloom to other truckers over his
CB radio.
Through the years we have had
many outstanding field trips and
evening programs. Several times
during the 1970s and 1980s Ledyard
Stebbins returned to the north coast
to give a lecture on flowering plants.
Our evening programs now occur
monthly and are always informa-
tive and entertaining. A February
2002 symposium that the chapter
organized, titled "The Ecology and
Management of Rare Plants of
Northwestern California," was an
ambitious full-day event that drew
participants from all over the state
and Oregon. With 31 speakers and
over 200 participants, the sympo-
sium was an unmitigated success.
In December of 2002 the chapter
received an award from the state
CNPS president, Sue Britting, for
developing and organizing this in-
formative event.
Other educational activities that
the North Coast Chapter has spon-
sored include a monthly newsletter,
the annual spring wildflower show,
native plant gardening and school
science fairs, and a display booth
that is used at events to educate the
public about CNPS and native
plants. The chapter newsletter orig-
inally was called the "California
Native Plant Society North Coast
Chapter Newsletter" (whew!) but
became the "Darlingtonia" in 1974.
Just recently we cosponsored the
20th Annual Spring Wildflower
Show. We have been cosponsors of
this event along with the Nature
Discovery Volunteers since 1995
and have involved school groups,
Friends of the Dunes, Redwood
Interpretive Association, and Cali-
fornia Indian Basketweavers Asso-
ciation. Each year we also give an
award to the best Humboldt County
science fair project that focuses on
native plants. We helped to estab-
lish a native plant garden at Pacific
Union Elementary School in 1994,
which continues to be an educa-
tional tool for the students. In 2000
we sponsored a native plant propa-
gation and restoration program at
Winship Junior High School. Over
the years we have worked at estab-
lishing native plant gardens on the
HSU campus, at roadside areas, the
Arcata community center, and the
United Indian Health Services
Potowat Clinic.
Our display booth can be found
at many of the fairs and events
throughout Humboldt County,
where it serves to educate people
about native plants on the North
Coast. At two of these events we
also have a plant sale, our primary
fundraiser. Although the idea for a
chapter plant sale germinated dur-
ing the 1980s, the first plant sale
did not take place until 1992. John
McRae, Chris Blumstrom (now
Chris Jenican-Beresford), along
with Steve and Carol Matthews
spearheaded the first sale. It has
been a great success ever since.
In addition to the many enter-
taining educational activities of the
chapter, we also engage in the seri-
ous (and sometimes not so serious)
business of conservation. The chap-
ter has been active in the conserva-
tion of native plant species and their
habitat throughout this region of
Northern California. The chapter
has been kept extremely busy deal-
ing with the conservation needs of
its varied plant communities, in-
cluding hardwood and conifer for-
ests, serpentine landscapes and
meadows of the Klamath and
Western lily (Lilium occidentale), one of
the special plants of northwestern Cali-
fornia. Photograph by A. Pickart.
A rare wallflower of northwestern Cali-
fornia, Menzies or Humboldt Bay
wallflower (Erysimum menziesii ssp.
eurekense), named for its type locality near
the city of Eureka. Photograph by A.
Pickart.

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