Passionflower Chapter

Florida Native Plant Society

Past Activity News

May 8, 2021 - Maintaining a Florida Native Yard

Planting Florida Native Plants is only the beginning.  As we learned in our February and March 2021 programs (watch via links below), the key to an attractive yard, regardless of the type of plants, is a cared-for look. Although our native plants have many low maintenance benefits - including needing less water, fertilizer, and pesticides - all plants require some maintenance.  This program explains native plant maintenance for Prevention, Pests & Disease, and Wildlife and includes lots of care instructions and tips for healthy plants, a cared-for look, and an attractive yard that people, birds, and butterflies can enjoy. 

Watch Maintaining a Florida Native Plant Yard here.


April/May 2021 - Plant Rescues

On multiple days in April and May, Passionflower volunteers joined volunteers from other FNPS chapters to rescue native plants from a development site in Clermont.  These plants, many of them threatened due to habitat loss, will be hardened at a nursery and replanted later in the summer at a restoration site.  This not only increases the native plant population at the site, but also increases the biodiversity.

Rescues and replanting will continue through the summer.  Email Passionflower if you are interested in helping with this important work.


April 10, 2021 - Plant Identification

Want to learn about some tools and techniques for identifying plants?  Some of our Chapter member sent in pictures of "Mystery Plants" wanting to learn if they were friend (native, useful to wildlife) or foe (non Florida-Friendly exotic, invasive).  See the pictures, test your plant knowledge and learn about useful tools for plant identification as we talk about how we identified the plants and how you can improve your skills.

Watch Plant Identification here.


March 10, 2021 - Legislation and Talking Points for Native Landscaping

UF/IFAS FFL Program Statewide Florida-Friendly Communities Coordinator, Clair Lewis, spoke to Passionflower members and supporters on March 10th.  Her presentation included very interesting (and sometimes surprising) research and focus group data about water usage, yard task labor, and landscape preferences developed for educational activities with homeowners, developers, HOAs, and landscaping companies.  She also shared some of the features of the updated UF/IFAS website including a very useful Florida-Friendly Plant Guide (which includes a lot of native plants and allows searching by zip code and plant form) and tips (and layouts) for Butterfly Gardens and identifying butterflies.  Some of the educational materials Claire mentioned are posted on our Resources Page.

One conclusion of the research Claire presented was that concern focused on maintenance, not just the type of plants.  Our program on Saturday, May 8th will address "Maintaining a Florida Native Yard".

If you missed the program watch the Legislation and Talking Points for Native Landscaping recording.

February 13, 2021 - Creating Harmony with Natives and HOAs

Kirsten Sharp-Ortega, Passionflower Member and Designer and Co-Owner of My Dragonfly Gardens spoke to the chapter about Creating Harmony with Natives and HOAs.  Her program focused on design fundamentals, how to create visual interest and a neat look, and maintenance considerations,  Throughout she talked about specific native plants appropriate for this area - how they grow and look during different seasons and the care they need - with an emphasis on wildlife value.  So this presentation is a must for anyone looking for plant suggestions for an existing or new garden.  If you missed it or want to watch again use this link Creating Harmony with Natives and HOAs.


January 13, 2021 - Native Plants for Florida Gardens

For Passionflower's first program of 2021, Stacey Matrazzo from the Florida Wildflower Foundation took the guesswork out of using many native plants in urban and naturalistic residential landscaptes.  Stacey's presention included detailed information on site conditions, growing season, range, lifespan, bloom season, growth habit, propagation, planting, care, and tips for growing a a selection of species from her book, Native Plants for Florida Gardens.

If you missed the program you can watch the Native Plants for Florida Gardens recording.


November 14, 2020 - Grasses, Sedges and Rushes

On November 14th restoration ecologist, botanist, and horticulturist Nancy Bissett shared her knowledge about Grasses, Sedges and Rushes with Passionflower members and supporters. Nancy explained how these attractive and useful native plants have a lot to recommend them - they provide structure and an interesting accent in wildflower gardens, make a great groundcover in open, dry areas, are low maintenance, stabilize soil, provide seeds and shelter for wildlife, and many are larval hosts for butterflies and moths. Most attendees were familiar with pink muhly grass; however Nancy described and showed gorgeous pictures of a lot of other species.  You can watch the recorded Grasses, Sedges and Rushes program.


October 22, 2020 - Warea Census

Clasping Warea (Warea amplexifolia) is a delicately beautiful, endangered plant endemic to sandhill habitat in Central Florida.  Only eight populations of this species remain in Marion, Lake, Polk and Osceola counties.  One of those populations is at the Warea Tract in Clermont where Passionflower members joined volunteers from FNPS, Forest Service, and other organizations to conduct a census


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