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  • Blog — New England Wild Flower Society
    Shrubs Introduction to Designing with Native Plants Watercolor in the Garden Basic Wetland ID and Delineation Introduction to Native Ferns Introduction to Native Ferns Understanding Scale in the Garden Shady Edibles Pollinators in Peril Understanding and Managing Soils Yankee Garden Tour Natives Pollinators and Your Backyard Niquette Bay State Park North Truro Dunes Walk Schoodic Point Trillium Week May 9 15 New England Plant Diversity Session 2 What Role Do Nativars Play in an Ecological Landscape Arbor Day Celebration and Tree Giveaway Understanding Trilliums Story Time and Musical Play at Garden in the Woods New England Plant Diversity Session 3 Low Maintenance Design with Native Plants Native Plants for Professionals Native Herbaceous Plant Materials Late Season New England Plant Diversity Session 4 New England Plant Diversity Session 5 Wildflowers of New England Introduction to Plant Families Native Herbaceous Plant Materials Early Season Landscape for Life Native New England Shrubs Wildflowers of New England Vernal Pools are Cool Webinar Twenty Great Native Plants for Your Garden New England Plant Diversity Session 1 Wetland Shrubs Survey of Grasses of the Northeast Wildflowers of Maine Wildflowers of New Hampshire Conservation Biology Urban Gardening Series Tough Plants for Tough Places Urban Gardening Series Pruning Fundamentals Urban Gardening Series Planting Basics Watertown Life Friendly Gardens Tour Family Hike Acton Arboretum Bog Chapman Pond Odiorne Point State Park Old Pepper Place Nature Reserve Orono Bog Vossburg Hills Plants 102 Deeper into the Green World Wildflower Walk With Mary The Audubon of Botany Hydric Soils Mushrooms for Beginners Plant Form and Function Designing Gardens for Small Spaces Native Woody Plant Materials Plants and Pints Devil s Den Gifford Woods State Park Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary Waterboro Barrens New England Plant Communities Botanic Inventory Methods Placemakers Lecture Wildflowers of Rhode Island Wildflowers of Vermont Introduction to Carex Field Identification

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/sitemap (2016-05-01)
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  • Plants and Pollinators: When One is in Trouble, So is the Other — New England Wild Flower Society
    to decline than others What do we mean by vulnerable These are species that have lost many populations over time and or their New England range distributions have disproportionately shrunk relative to their historically documented range Information on their historical population numbers and their ranges come from a wealth of botanical collections amassed in New England herbaria by dozens of botanists since the 1700s We also can compare the number of known plant populations first recorded in the Flora Conservanda in 1996 by Bill Brumback and colleagues to those listed in the Flora Conservanda 2012 update The first study shows that of 71 species we examined that insect pollinated plants have lost significantly more populations and extent of their former range area than plants that can self pollinate or rely on wind to move pollen The latter comparison showed that more than 70 of species showing declines in population numbers between 1996 and 2012 were insect pollinated versus fewer than 20 of wind pollinated species Clearly these are correlative data but they are based on observations of large numbers of species and such signals emerge as quite strong even as plants are affected by a constellation of threats and stressors What does this say about pollinator and plant decline in New England This finding presents a bit of a chicken and egg problem are plants declining because their pollinators are less abundant or are pollinators becoming less abundant in part because their nectar and pollen bearing food plants are becoming less common Only experimental fieldwork can tell us for sure but these patterns point to the urgency of such research and the need to conserve both partners in the pollination dance Plants and their pollinators share a reciprocal relationship mutualism in which each is heavily dependent on the other And

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/plants-and-pollinators-when-one-is-in-trouble-so-is-the-other.html (2016-05-01)
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  • What’s a Plant To Do? Threats Facing Rare Plants in New England — New England Wild Flower Society
    by rhizomes or other vegetative means Some species are rare not just in New England but throughout their entire range These so called sparse species first identified by Ecologist Deborah Rabinowitz and colleagues in the 1980s tend to have small populations and low reproductive rates but continue to persist just fine in their native habitats For example purple milkweed Asclepias purpurascens is just as sparse in the heart of its prairie range as it is here in New England Other species are rare because they face external threats to their continued existence How do we identify and rank the threats to these species When the Society s intrepid Plant Conservation Volunteers and Task Force members go out in the field to monitor rare plant populations they are asked to identify and list any threats they see impinging on the site they are observing They record their observations on standardized field forms which are turned in to Natural Heritage Programs This data gathering allows us to categorize the stressors that are affecting literally hundreds of plant occurrences We analyzed 840 populations across 81 species of rare plants in order to rank a suite of 23 threats that had been flagged on field forms The top five threats were Succession to a closed canopy which competitively excluded plants such as field and sandplain species adapted for more open conditions Trampling by foot traffic or all terrain vehicles Competition with invasive plant species Conversion of rare plant habitat to housing and other developments Disturbance related to maintaining roads railroads and other rights of way such as power lines In many ways these data quantify the obvious we all know that pavement is bad for plants for example But being able to identify the most pervasive threats across the region enables the Society and

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/what2019s-a-plant-to-do-threats-facing-rare-plants-in-new-england.html (2016-05-01)
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  • Plant Native Plants: Even in Cities — New England Wild Flower Society
    titled Birders The Central Park Effect have painted a clear picture of the importance for green space even in the midst of some of the most populous cities on earth The researchers recorded the density of thousands of plant and animal species reported in cities expressed as number of species per square kilometer Next they assembled lists of the species expected to occur in nearby non urban areas based on published range maps of these taxa They then explored correlations between bird and plant density and 10 factors characterizing each city including its age the proportion of land cover with green space climate geography and topography Interestingly North America contained a high overall number and density of plants and birds associated with cities second only to Indo Malayan countries Perhaps surprisingly cities harbor significant numbers of bird and plant species Twenty percent of globally known bird species and more than 14 000 plant species representing 5 of the earth s flora and 2 3 of all plant families occur in cities The researchers note that cities with more open space parks conservation areas and greenways support higher proportions of the expected bird and plant species However other findings were more sobering cities only support about 25 of the plant species and only 8 of birds that would be predicted to occur there based on their overall urban and non urban ranges On average about 28 of plant species in cities around the globe are exotic to their locales Could it be that birds and other organisms face a lack of native species in cities and therefore tend to give them a miss What if we attracted them by planting more of the native plants on which they depend Reflecting on these data the authors conclude Efforts directed towards conservation and

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/plant-native-plants-even-in-cities.html (2016-05-01)
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  • Plants Get Around — New England Wild Flower Society
    the right tools for promoting their dispersal and finding appropriate habitats on the other side Small seeds from species such as birch can float around on water currents or melting snow Sticky seeded species such as burdock Arctium spp the inspiration for Velcro incidentally can hitch a ride on any human or animal passerby Milkweed Asclepias species seeds loft on wind currents Ecologists have even recently documented the longest plant dispersal event known in the world 11 000 miles from Hawai i to Reunión Island in the Indian Ocean It turns out that long distance dispersal events though statistically very rare may contribute importantly to the movement of entire species to new ranges For years botanists have been puzzling over the apparently too rapid dispersal of plant species following the Pleistocene Pondering in 1905 British botanist Clement Reid could not figure out how plant species crossed the English Channel at the rate of 100 1000 meters per year and his bafflement was appropriately dubbed Reid s Paradox Finally in 1998 statistical ecologist James Clark solved the Paradox by determining that even very low probability dispersal events can explain the northward expansion of tree species following glaciation This is not to say that all members of our New England flora will simply buy one way tickets and survive climate change Following deglaciation some tree species colonized new areas faster than others Oaks Quercus species with their large heavy acorns did not populate Vermont heavily during warming times for example And today there is the significant barrier posed by what I call the I 95 effect named after the interstate highway that runs from Florida to New England the fact that human produced structures and habitat fragmentation will likely block some species from migrating elsewhere if their preferred habitats no longer exist

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/plants-get-around.html (2016-05-01)
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  • Climate Change and the Future of Plant Life symposium: Andy Finton — New England Wild Flower Society
    identifying climate resilient areas that enable species and communities to move or rearrange as climate change alters their habitats Resilience defines the ability of plants animals and entire ecosystems to moderate the impacts of climate change cope with consequences and take advantage of opportunities in short the capacity to adapt Climate resilient areas will provide natural strongholds to conserve biological diversity into the future These sites include well connected habitats with diverse microhabitats which provide species with options to move to more suitable areas during periods of extreme weather associated with climate change Andy will describe the concepts behind resilience the key components of the analysis and how the results are best applied to help retain plant diversity into the future The Nature Conservancy works collaboratively with government agencies NGOs land trusts businesses and local communities to apply innovative science and expertise to catalyze conservation at scale Andy has been a part of these Conservancy efforts for 17 years now His expertise focuses on forest and landscape ecology spatial analyses and protecting landscapes that provide people and nature with a full suite of benefits Currently Andy is working with scientists across the East Coast to define a network of resilient

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/climate-change-and-the-future-of-plant-life-symposium-andy-finton.html (2016-05-01)
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  • Climate Change and the Future of Plant Life symposium: Dr. David Foster — New England Wild Flower Society
    As Director of the Harvard Forest at Harvard University Dr David Foster addressed this question in the publication of Wildlands and Woodlands A Vision for the New England Landscape in 2010 The Wildlands and Woodlands W W vision calls for a 50 year effort to conserve 70 percent of New England as forest permanently free from development Through the leadership and commitment of landowners these conserved lands will continue to power the region s traditional land based economy and provide environmental and social benefits for current and future generations At the Climate Change and the Future of Plant Life symposium on March 26 David will update us on how New England forests may respond to major changes due to the interplay of climate change human activity and a range of physical and biological disturbances An understanding of forests from the distant and recent past are now complemented by tools from scenario science and modeling helping scientists understand how these forces may play out in New England forests The biggest remaining uncertainty is our collective willingness and ability to advance conservation David is an ecologist and the author of Thoreau s Country Journey through a Transformed Landscape Wildlands and Woodlands A

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/blog/climate-change-and-the-future-of-plant-life-symposium-dr-david-foster.html (2016-05-01)
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  • Symposium - New England Wild Flower Society
    to bridge gaps in our knowledge of plant species and ecological communities and develop a framework for protecting the viability of thousands of species that together comprise our diverse and vibrant flora Whither New England Scenarios for the Future and Perspectives from the Past Dr David R Foster is the Director of the Harvard Forest Harvard University s 3 750 acre ecological laboratory and classroom He is the author of several books on the New England landscape and leads Harvard Forest s Long Term Ecological Research program which engages more than 100 scientists investigating the dynamics of New England landscape as a consequence of climate change human activity and natural processes New England like much of the globe is faced with the potential for major change due to the interplay of climate change human activity and a range of physical and biological disturbances Lessons from the deep and recent past and tools from scenario science and modeling help inform our expectations for how these may play out but a huge uncertainty is our willingness and ability to advance conservation Identifying Species at Risk from Climate Change and Considering Alternative Conservation Strategies Dr Dov F Sax is Associate Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Brown University and the Deputy Director for Education of the Institute at Brown for Environment and Society His research focuses on species responses to climate change species extinction and species invasions His current research explores how species vary in their vulnerability to changes in climate Many species are likely to be at risk of extinction from climate change We are currently poorly equipped however to determine which species are most likely to be impacted This presentation describes a new approach using non native and horticultural distributions of plants to forecast risks from climate change We also consider the relative merits of alternative and controversial conservation strategies such as managed relocation Options The Key to a Resilient Future Andy Finton is Director of Conservation Programs for The Nature Conservancy in Massachusetts and specializes in forest and landscape ecology and spatial analysis He recently collaborated with the Massachusetts Natural Heritage program to develop BioMap2 a conservation blueprint for the state of Massachusetts identifying resilient habitats in the face of a changing climate Resilience defines the ability of plants animals and entire ecosystems to moderate the impacts of climate change cope with consequences and take advantage of opportunities in short the capacity to adapt Climate resilient areas identified by The Nature Conservancy will enable species and communities to move or rearrange as climate change alters their habitats providing natural strongholds to conserve biological diversity into the future Moderated by William Brumback Director of Conservation New England Wild Flower Society SCHEDULE 9 00 Registration continental breakfast 9 30 Opening Remarks Debbi Edelstein Executive Director New England Wild Flower Society 9 45 State of the Plants Challenges and Opportunities for Conservation of the New England Flora Dr Elizabeth Farnsworth 11 00 Whither New England Scenarios for the Future and Perspectives from

    Original URL path: http://backstage.newenglandwild.org/sym (2016-05-01)
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