Sunday, September 12, 2010

You're out there, somewhere

Driving back from the fall meeting of the Missouri Native Plant Society last night, I couldn't stop thinking about the activity report from the Kansas City Chapter representative. Each of us took turns telling the rest of the society members what the different chapters were up to these days. Some chapters had late summer potlucks, others had garden tours of local native plantings, some had outings to nearby natural areas, and the Kansas City chapter did it all--they met for outings, picnics, and meetings more often than I call my own beloved mother.

So I started to think of the dedication the Kansas City chapter members have to native plants, and the camaraderie that comes along with membership in the Missouri Native Plant Society. The society is made of a wonderful mix of people, some are great botanists, others, like myself, native plant enthusiasts, but they all share a fondness of Missouri's natural history. Aside from the statewide chapter, there are local chapters, including two in the Ozarks-- one covering the Springfield area, and the other in the central Ozarks, with meetings held in West Plains and scheduled outings taking place throughout the Ozarks. If you ever wanted to learn more about native plants or just looking for a community, these are groups you should become involved with. New members are always welcome!

I encourage you to visit the NPS website, and seek out a local chapter. The statewide chapter outing to the Kansas City area took place this weekend, but local chapters have fieldtrips and meetings planned throughout the fall. The Ozarks Chapter will be offering a talk on invasive plants by an instructor from Missouri State on Sept. 21 at 6:30 pm at the West Plains MDC office.

Poke around the website, contact a local chapter representative, and join in on the fun!


Paul Nelson said...

I believe that every person has a hidden talent, desire or passion that perhaps goes unnoticed for part or all of their lives. You and that person in the photo have passion for wildflowers in their native, ancient, raw habitat. Im fortunate that at a very early age, my mother allowed me to venture as a child of 5 into the wilds of woodlots in St. Louis to discover nature. At 5, I drew in detail the individual veined leaves and flower parts (my mother still has the drawing)of some shrub. Somehow that experience, and the one of the tornado funnel roaring over my house, forever imprinted wild places,wild flowers and wild weather in my brain. I'll never loose that passion; guess I'm still a kid at heart. It would be a grand thing to know that even one of your readers got your message, joined or just went along on an outing, and discovered an untapped passion. Oh and I know the place in the photo is likely a glade at Ha Ha Tonka. I promise to visit there before all the fall wildflowers succumb to frost. Paul Nelson

Allison Vaughn said...

You know, both NPS and Audubon chapters could use new members, new energy to preserve and protect and all...