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Winter 2001-2002 Newsletter
Vol. 11 No. 1

Propagating Native Plants
Thursday, January 24, 7 pm
Nevada County Library Community Room

Redbud Chapter's January meeting will be an unusual opportunity to learn basic methods of propagating California natives. At this informal workshop we'll have demonstrations by five experts:

"Native Bulbs" by Nancy Gilbert, botanist and co-owner with husband, Ames, of Far West Bulb Farm near Cedar Ridge. Nancy specializes in the propagation and cultivation of Calochortus, Fritillaria, Allium, Lilium, Brodiaea plus many other Sierra foothills species. Far West Farm's educational display and booth at our fall plant sale always attracts many gardeners and wildflower lovers.

"Hardwood Cuttings" by Nick Jensen and Justin Maciulis, propagators for the Environmental Horticulture Department's nursery at Sierra College. They enjoy experimenting with unusual and, often overlooked, locally native species. With the encouragement of their teacher, Marcia Braga, they produce the beautiful plants sold by Sierra College at Redbud's sales.

"Growing Redbuds from Seed" with Robert Foster, past president of Foothills Horticulture Society and dedicated plant sale volunteer, will demonstrate how to start our favorite shrub.

"Growing Natives in Containers" by Chet Blackburn, past president of Redbud and coordinator of our chapter's wildflower book project. Chet exhibits his wonderful collection of native plants grown in containers each spring at Redbud's Wildflower Show. He'll share his experiences from this unique project .

Hand-outs on propagation and growing natives, wildflower posters, and books will be available at the meeting.

To get there: The library is located at 980 Helling Way, Nevada City. At the intersection of Hwy 49 and 20 in Nevada City, turn west toward Downieville on Hwy 49. At about 1 mile, turn right at the Nevada Co. Government Center & follow signs to the library.

Upcoming Chapter Meetings

Thursday, March 21 and Thursday, May 16, 2002, 7pm at Hennessy School, 225 South Auburn St., Grass Valley. Mark your calendar!

Redbud Chapter Officers for 2002-2003

The following members have accepted nominations to serve as Redbud officers. Please give them your vote of support at our January 24th meeting. The next board meeting will be Saturday, January 19, at 10 am in Auburn and all members are index. For information about the board meeting and about volunteering for open positions contact Richard Hanes at 530-477-0643.
PresidentRichard Hanes
Vice President, Nevada CoVicki Lake
Vice President, Placer Coopen
SecretaryLynne Hurrell
TreasurerChet Blackburn
Rare PlantsCarolyn Chainey-Davis
MembershipBobbi Wilkes
PostersBob Foster
BooksJulie Carville
NewsletterKaren Callahan
Conservation, Placer Co.Monica Finn
Conservation, Nevada
Spring Plant SaleCathie French-Tritel
Field Tripsopen
EducationShawna Martinez

Thank you, Bobbi!

Redbud's been very fortunate to have Bobbi Wilkes as our newsletter editor since 1994. She's brought her personal charm and good humor, her love of plants and animals, and her concern for our environment to each issue. Bobbi's professional success as Roberta Navickis, Ph.D., medical researcher and writer, led her to seek a replacement after 7 years of volunteering her writing talents for our chapter.

Revegetation Projects at Bridgeport

by Marya Miller

Sierra Foothills Audubon Society wishes to thank Redbud Chapter, CNPS, for its advice and support of our revegetation project at Bridgeport, South Yuba River State Park. The reason for the project was that a controlled burn and treatment of blackberries destroyed some good birding habitat. At the request of the conservation committee, Karen Callahan and Mark Chainey (also of SFAS) looked at the site and made recommendations on what and how to plant. During the first 2 weeks of November a group of workers dug holes, chopped blackberries, put in a watering system, and planted 65 native trees, shrubs, and vines. The location is near the cemetery and quite obvious from Pleasant Valley Road. Easy to get to if you are interested in viewing the site.

And, a second project, a native plant garden, is planned for an area between the Visitor's Center and the South Yuba River beach. State Park personnel recently cleared exotic invasive plants and installed wheelchair accessible pathways. The proposed garden area is bordered by stands of Snowdrop Bush, (Styrax officinalis), Wild Mock Orange ( Philadelphus lewisii), Bigleaf Maple ( Acer macrophyllum), Narrow-leaf Milkweed (Asclepias eriocarpa), and Canyon Live Oak (Quercus chrysolepsis). Contact Walt Carnahan (530-273-4599) or Marya Miller (530-432-1243) to help with the Bridgeport projects.

Thanks to all for the success of our September Sale!

Our plant sales are Redbud's major source of funds for chapter activities and special projects. We depend on the hundreds of enthusiastic and patient customers, the generous growers that contribute time and talent, and the 30+ volunteers who work for weeks to organize the sale. Tristan Berlund, botanist and artist, created the beautiful original drawing of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi for our plant sale flyer and fall newsletter. Thank you, Tristan

Attention Gardeners

Redbud has over 100 Manzanitas (Arctostaphylos) in one gallon pots for sale. Create a drought-resistant border or cover a slope with these evergreen California natives. Manzanita flowers provide nectar for hummingbirds in early spring. Their late-summer fruit attracts many bird species including quail.

Manzanitas available:

  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi "Green Bay" is popular as a low, spreading ground cover.
  • Arctostaphylos densiflora "Monica" has shiny green leaves & pink flower clusters.
  • Arctostaphylos. bakeri is a handsome shrub adapted to serpentine & chaparral.

Please contact Bob Foster at 530-274-9864 for more information. Thank you Bob, Carolyn and Chet for caring for the plants.

Swiss Wildflower Adventures

Karen Wiese, Redbud's Vice President, will lead Wildflower AdventureTrips to Zermatt in the Swiss Alps. For information about Karen's Summer 2002 trips call her at 530-346-7131 or visit "" on the web.

Conservation News:

  • Proposition 40

    CNPS members from around the state are looking to the successful passage of Prop. 40 on the March 2002 ballot to aid them in their conservation efforts. Prop. 40 is the California Clean Water, Clean Air, Safe Neighborhood Parks, and Coastal Protection Act of 2002. Prop. 40 will provide $2.6 Billion to help preserve California ecosystems and habitats, and improve people's ability to enjoy already-protected natural areas. Placer and Nevada Counties will receive a minimum of $1.2 million. There will be additional funds going to each city and park district in the counties and competitive grant funds for special projects. For more information visit "" or contact Bryan Blum at 916-313-4539. (Information provided by the Planning & Conservation League, and CNPS is a member of the state-wide League.)

  • Inventory of Rare and Endangered Plants

    Our Rare Plant Chairhuman ordered a quantity of the new Sixth Edition of the Inventory from CNPS. Order your copy from us and save on postage. Proceeds benefit our Chapter. Please contact Richard Hanes at 530-477-0643. Redbud has donated copies to the Placer County and Nevada County Libraries.

  • USFS Study of Kellogg's Lewisia Released

    The National Forest Genetic Electrophoresis Laboratory (NFGEL) in Placerville, CA, recently studied isozyme variation in 6 Idaho and 7 California populations of Lewisia kelloggii, including two populations in Placer County. Lewisia kelloggii was originally described by Katherine Brandegee from specimens collected by Albert Kellogg in 1870 near Cisco, Placer Co. Lewisia kelloggii is not listed in the CNPS Inventory of Rare and Endangered Plants, 6th Edition, but perhaps this new research will lead to a change in its status. Here are some exerpts from the report authored by Valerie Hipkins and Barbara Wilson of NFGEL:

    "Lewisia kelloggii populations in Idaho and California...are as distinct as two different species. In California, the National Forests were all differentiated, suggesting that it is important to conserve this rare plant in every National Forest where it occurs."

    "Lewisia kelloggii K. Brandegee is a small rare plant found in open areas on excessively drained, coarse-textured granitic and volcanic soils on ridgelines. It has a disjunct range, occurring in the Sierra Nevada of California (from Plumas Co. south to Fresno Co.) and in Idaho ( in Valley, Elmore, and Custer Counties)...Lewisia kelloggii has no special seed dispersal mechanisms that would allow dispersal across the 540 km separating the closest California and Idaho populations."

    "Its high elevation habitat [6.500 ft-9,500 ft] might seem to protect this rare species from human disturbance, but that is not entirely true. Lewisia kelloggii is at risk in part because its open ridgetop habitats are often desirable sites for roads and trails... It is vulnerable to damage by logging because its habitats are suitable for landings and parking equipment... In addition, a few populations have suffered from overcollection for cultivation, although the diminutive, nearly stemless species is not as showy as most Lewisias and is difficult to maintain in cultivation."

    (The FGEL report is entitled: "Genetic Differentiation in a Rare Plant with a Disjunct Range: Lewisia kelloggii ")

    I'd be interested in hearing from CNPS members with information about populations of Lewisia kelloggii in Nevada and Placer Counties. Please call Karen at 530-272-5532.

  • Environmental Lawsuit Seeks Critical Habitat Protection for Eight Imperiled Plants

    The California Native Plant Society (CNPS) and the Center for Biological Diversity (Center) filed a lawsuit in November in federal court against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). The suit challenges the FWS's failure to designate critical habitat for eight plant species in nine southern California counties listed as threatened or endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act.

    Critical habitat designation identifies the habitat that is essential to the survival and recovery of listed species and provides mechanisms for protecting that habitat from destruction or degradation...Only 11% of federally listed animal and plant species in the U.S. have designated critical habitat.

    In selecting the eight plants for the suit, the groups focused on species living on federal public land or in areas under federal jurisdiction, such as wetlands, and avoided species that occur solely on private land.

    "The law makes no provision for critical habitat to affect management of private lands in the absence of federal involvement" said Emily Roberson of CNPS. "Our goal is to improve land management by federal agencies, particularly in our rivers and wetlands and on the millions of acres of publicly owned National Forests, BLM public lands, and wildlife refuges in California. Critical habitat designation is one way to improve our understanding and management of rare species."

    (From the CNPS-San Diego Chapter's Newsletter)

  • Two Other Rare Species Protected

    In a similar action, the Center for Biodiversity and CNPS recently won a court order protecting two other rare species.

    The US Fish & Wildlife Service issued proposed rules to designate and protect 22,054 acres of critical habitat for the Purple Amole (Chlorogalum purpureum) and Kneeland Prairie Penny-cress (Thlaspi californicum).

    The Penny-cress and Amole are two of 181 California plants protected under the ESA. Most of these plants, including the Amole, were first petitioned for federal protection by the Smithsonian Institution in 1975. They languished in bureaucratic limbo for decades until the Center and CNPS filed suit to protect them.

    (Information from Richard Hanes)

  • CNPS Forestry Program

    CNPS has initiated a new Forestry Program to help protect California's native forests and woodlands and their rich flora. The Forestry Program under the leadership of Greg Jirak is recruiting volunteers to represent all chapters and to work on issues such as timber harvest plans, sudden oak death monitoring, vineyard conversions, BLM policies, and rare plants impacted by forest activities. The Forestry Program's new web site is "" and is a great source of detailed information on forest issues.

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Last updated
Feb 2002