North Coast Chapter - CNPS

1998 Spring Wildflower Show

Another Success! Thanks to the efforts of many

By: Wildflower Show Co-Chairs

Nearly 1000 people signed the guest book at the 14th annual Spring Wildflower Show, held May 1-3 at the County Office of Education in Eureka. Specimens of over 400 species and sub-species were on display: 319 species were identified, 256 native, 63 introduced; 91 remained unidentified. 76 families were represented by 216 genera. 32 species were on display for the first time, 20 natives, 12 introduced. Dozens of volunteers made the wildflower show and the related events possible. We want to acknowledge their participation and mention the roles of specific individuals to help convey the character and breadth of the show as well to give credit to the many whose contributions might not have been apparent.

Student volunteers from the College of the Redwoods helped with set-up. Nature Discovery President Bill Shapeero who invited these student volunteers also was responsible for reserving our facility and arranging for printing much of the show materials. Darlene Whiting, one of our featured speakers, single-handedly collected the edible/non-edible portion of the show as well as the tree and shrub specimens. Lucy Owen and her helpers prepared the display of dune flora, and artists Demian Martens, Dorothy Klein and Andrea Pickart organized the always popular "Art Night." Thanks also to our other speakers, Gisela and Jerry Rohde, who presented a slide show on auto tours in Humboldt County, complete with printed road maps for the audience.

Of all the behind-the-scene preparations, collection is perhaps the most critical. Effective collectors require a sound understanding of conservation principles, a knowledge of the flora of specific locales, and a sense of the seasonal progression of flowering. In appreciation of their skill and effort in collection and plant identification, our "thanks" to the following individuals: Tony LaBanca, Steve Darington, Nezzie Wade, Sydney Carothers, Darlene Whiting, Dan Brown and Clare Golec. Additional thanks to all who helped transfer the plants to bottles, and assisted with their identification, including Robin Bencie, John Cromwell, Barbara Kelly, Ed Kempner. For more behind-the-scenes work, thanks also to Dave Imper who contributed the table-top plant family posters; Dan Yoshimoto for creating the "Photo Op "corner and staffing it during the show; Steven Darington for his seemingly endless hours of preparing and printing the plant identification cards, and his meticulous attention to the wildflower show database as well as collecting and cultivating plants for the display; Rita Orlandini whose help was crucial in organizing school group pre-study and visits; and the Americorps volunteers from Cadre of Corp who fulfilled the role of docents and escorts for the school groups who visited the show.

Several interpretive stations were set up within the display area for brief presentations to the school groups that visited the show on Friday. These included a pollination display prepared by John Cromwell and interpreted by Kim Hayler, the poisonous and edible plants display prepared and presented by Darlene Whiting, the caterpillar, butterfly and moths display, affectionately known as "Bugs in a Bucket," prepared and presented by Pete Haggard. Dan Brown also prepared an extensive educational display on the invasive exotics which was very successful in stimulating an interest in the issues, an excellent addition to the show. John McRae and the rest of the Plant Sale crew conducted a native plant sale, which was a tremendous success and netted nearly $1300 for the Northcoast Chapter. The sale of native plants was augmented by a gardening and information table staffed by Pete Haggard, who also shared his caterpillar, moths and butterfly display, while holding down the CNPS Booth for most of the weekend. A hearty thanks to Dave Imper for revamping our booth and to Dan Brown for keeping it stocked with literature. Network Services at the County Office of Education contributed a computer and an ethernet connection so that visitors and staff could access the CNPS North Coast chapter’s web site (, and other botanical resources on the WWW.

Many volunteers were there to greet the public and provide information about the show and related events, including Hiromi Yoshimoto, Linda Ockerberg, and Helen Mattison. Overall, the publicity involved the help of many individuals in NDV and the North Coast Chapter, especially for distributing fliers prepared by Larry Levine and Demian Martens, and painting or posting signs. Most of the media contact work, preparation of PSAs, press releases or articles was the result of efforts by the co-chairs. Each co-chairs was involved in all phases of the show and offered hundreds of hours of their time, over the course of the year, to bring this show to fruition with your help. Good Job! The above details illustrate that there are many ways in which volunteers can contribute to the show. Join us next year! Planning for 1998 starts this September. We need you!

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California Native Plant Society - North Coast Chapter
P.O. Box 1067 Arcata, CA 95518-1067
Last updated June 1998