Spring 2008 Minnesota Plant Press
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  • 1. Minnesota Plant Press The Minnesota Native Plant Society NewsletterVolume 27 Number 3 Spring 2008 Monthly meetings Thompson Park Center/Dakota Lodge Plants are indicators of wetland quality Thompson County Park 360 Butler Ave. E., West St. Paul, MN 55118 651-552-7559 (kitchen) by Michael Bourdaghs. wetland biologist, Minnesota Pollution Programs Control Agency. This is an abstract of his talk at the Dec. 6, 2007 MN NPS meeting. The MN NPS meets the first Thursday The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) has worked forin October, November, December, over 10 years to develop a wetland biological monitoring program inFebruary, March, April, May, and June. support of the state and federal “no net loss” wetland policy. BiologicalCheck the website for more program monitoring is the use of biological community measurements toinformation. assess the condition (i.e., deviation from a natural or least disturbed 6 p.m. — Social period state) of the resource. In this case, we measure plant communities 7 – 9 p.m. — Program, society to assess wetland condition. This is an effective approach, as plantbusiness communities can integrate multiple human impacts to wetlands over May 1:  “Under the Cart Wheels:  space and time in predictable patterns.Natural Communities and Native  Plants Our primary indicator is called the Index of Biological IntegrityAlong the Pembina Trail,” presented by or IBI. An IBI is a multimetric index — meaning that it consists of aNancy Sather, DNR ecologist.  Plant of number of separate metrics that when combined produce a very robustthe Month:  Blanket flower (Gaillardia index of wetland condition. Each metric is selected primarily basedaristata).  on its response to human-caused wetland stress, such as hydrologic June 5  “Music of the Leaves:  How alteration or excess nutrient loading. To date, IBIs have beenPlants Arrange  Their Leaves for Most developed for depressional marshes statewide. We have successfullyEfficient Photosynthesis,” by Clarence L. applied our IBIs in a number of areas, including the Wetland HealthLehman, adjunct professor, Department Evaluation Program volunteer monitoring group (www.mnwhep.org);of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, a wetland quality survey conducted in the Redwood River watershed;University of Minn. Native Plant Sale and wetland assessment under the impaired waters section of thefollowing program.                             Clean Water Act.Prairie conference Looking to the future, the MPCA, in cooperation with a numberwebsite is changed of other state and federal agencies, has developed an overall wetland monitoring strategy. As part of The website for the 21st NorthAmerican Prairie Conference, which will the strategy, we have begun a statewide status and trends survey, In this issuebe held at Winona State University Aug. where wetlands are randomly President’s column .............24 to 8, has been changed. For information selected and assessed with IBIs. Conservation projects ........2 The survey will give us for the Rare rock pool plants ........3or to register, go to http://bio.winona.edu/ first time the ability to measure the Moose and forest ecology ...4NAPC/index.htm Conservation tip ................5 overall condition of depressionalMN NPS website marshes in Minnesota. In addition Birds need native plants ....6 For current information about MN NPS to the survey, we are continuing Field trips ..........................6field trips, meetings, and other events, to develop other monitoring Plant Lore: Starflower .......7 Native Plant Sale ...............7check the website: www.mnnps.org Continued on page 7
  • 2. President’s column MNNPS Boardby Scott Milburn The Minnesota Native Plant Society has recently begun our 27th year. of DirectorsPerhaps our best accomplishment is that we operate entirely as a volunteer President: Scott Milburn,organization. We rely on our members for every task, from the financial scott.milburn@mnnps.orgdetails to the organization of the social hour before every monthly meeting. Vice President: Shirley MahGreat work is being done by our members. From our field trip coordinator Kooyman, shirley.mah.kooyman@Ken Arndt to our membership coordinator David Johnson, we rely on their mnnps.orgefforts. As many of you know, Ken has been in charge of field trips for Secretary: Sean Jergens, sean.several years. Under his tenure, we have had the opportunity to explore jergens@mnnps.orgMinnesota and have been able to reach out to new members. This task Treasurer: Ron and Cathyinvolves hard work, dedicated time, and a great deal of coordination. Huber, ron.huber@mnnps.org Prior to every monthly meeting, paid members receive notification Ken Arndt, board member, fieldof the meeting. These postcards are prepared, stamped and mailed by trip chair, ken.arndt@mnnps.orgDavid Johnson, who is also in charge of membership. This is quite a task, Peter Dziuk, board member,and we appreciate the effort. Volunteering is worthwhile and beneficial peter.dziuk@mnnps.orgto advancing the Society. I ask our members to think of ways they can Daniel Jones, board member,contribute in the future. daniel.jones@mnnps.org I would also like to point out the great effort by the symposium committee. Beth Nixon, board member,Turnout for this year’s symposium was great, and the feedback was quite conservation committee chair, beth.positive. We are grateful for the Conservation nixon@mnnps.orgexcellent presentations and the panel Erika Rowe, board member, Actionsdiscussion. We hope that folks wereable to learn something new and to erika.rowe@mnnps.orgtake with them an appreciation for by Beth Nixon Russ Schaffenberg, boardone of the most amazing places in Readers of this newsletter are member, russ.schaffenberg@Minnesota. presumed to share a passion for mnnps.org On a related topic, we have built wild places and what they stir in Linda Huhn, programup a reserve of money over the past the heart, be it an aesthetic sense, coordinator, 612-374-1435few years due to the symposia. As spiritual strength, or playfulness Listserv Coordinator: Charlesnoted in my last column, we donate and creativity.  This past year the Umbanhowar, ceumb@stolaf.edua portion of our funds to support MN NPS responded to a call to Field Trips: fieldtrips.mnnps@various projects or groups that further ensure that some semblance of mnnps.orgthe mission of the Society. This this appreciation of wild places Memberships: memberships.can be a challenge, because there is brought to children living in mnnps@mnnps.org; 651-739-4323are quite a few ways to spend our Ramsey County.  The public school Historian-Archives: Roymoney. The board has been diligent funding gap left out busing for field Robison, historian-archives.in evaluating projects, viewing each trips, eliminating environmental mnnps@mnnps.orgdonation as an investment. We education at area nature centers.  For Technical or membershiprecently funded two special projects. the next three years, our Society will inquiries: contact.mnnps@mnnps.The first was purchasing 20 plant provide $300 per year for field trip orgfield guides for the Como Park High busing.  St. Paul Audubon SocietyWoodland Project. The second was will do the same.  Minnesota Plant Press Editor:providing partial funding for busing Gerry Drewry, 651-463-8006; The Conservation Committee iskids to nature centers for the next developing a member Action Alert plantpress.mnnps@mnnps.orgthree years. e-mail list for letter writing.  You Waterfest is May 17 We are also fortunate to have are not obligated to write every time Lake Phalen’s shorelinea great relationship with the Bell you receive an alert, but we hope that restoration will be celebrated MayMuseum of Natural History and once or twice a year you can quickly 17 during Waterfest 2008 at Phalenthank them for all of their help at the respond to an alert with a letter.  Park Pavilion, St. Paul. The event willsymposium. In closing, I hope that Talking points will be provided.  include rain garden tours, watershedeveryone has a chance to enjoy the Go to the website and contact the information and a native plant give-Minnesota Spring and please share Conservation Committee, or sign up away. Search “waterfest” at www.your enthusiasm with others. at the next monthly meeting. co.ramsey.mn.us for details.2
  • 3. Rare plants found in circumboreal range because it is limited to ephemeral pools. Itpools on rock outcrops occurs as a thin, floating-leaved aquatic form that reverts to a more succulent-leaved terrestrial formby Fred Harris, plant ecologist, designation as state listed rare when stranded in mud. MCBSMinnesota County Biological species. Also at that time, Emily located numerous new populationsSurvey, Minnesota DNR. This is an Nietering completed a Master’s of this species on the Prairie Coteauabstract of his talk at the March 6, thesis to locate many populations of in the last two years.2008 MN NPS meeting. these rare plants in the Minnesota Hairy water clover (Marsilea Temporary rainwater pools on River Valley. More recently, fairly vestita) — Prior to MCBS, thisrock outcrops in our prairie region systematic surveys by botanists of aquatic, heterosporous fern washave a unique flora for Minnesota. the Minnesota County Biological last recorded in Minnesota in 1938The two main areas of rock outcrops Survey (MCBS), have added to at Pipestone National Monument.in the prairie region are crystalline our knowledge of the species of In 2007, MCBS documentedbedrock exposures in the Minnesota rock pool habitats in the Minnesota several new populations of thisRiver Valley and Sioux Quartzite valley and the Prairie Coteau, species on Sioux Quartzite poolsoutcrops in the inner portion of the and relocated several species last in Pipestone and Rock counties.Prairie Coteau (Pipestone and Rock recorded in the early 1900s. Rare, Upright, terrestrial forms persistcounties). Sioux Quartzite exposures rock-pool specialist species include in drying mud where they producealso occur on the outer margins of the following. sporocarps. Seeing this tiny plant isthe Prairie Coteau in Cottonwood Water hyssop (Bacopa really a matter of being in the rightCounty. rotundifolia) — This small scroph place at the right time. Ephemeral rock outcrop pools occurs mostly in small rock Prairie quillwort (Isoetesvary from small, one-foot diameter depressions in the Minnesota valley, melanopoda) — In Minnesota, thispuddles in bedrock depressions with a few records from Sioux aquatic, heterosporous fern ally isto pools of 25 feet across. All of Quartzite pools on the Coteau. a northern disjunct from the restthese pools are at least eight to 10 Most of the available habitat for of its range in the United States.inches deep, last for at least one to this species has been examined, Prior to MCBS surveys, the speciestwo months, and dry up by late June and a total of approximately 20 had been known from Pipestonein most years. These ephemeral populations of this species have National Monument and Bluepools lack competition from the been located in the state since the Mounds State Park. In 2007, MCBSdense cover of wetland graminoids early 1900s. This species appears located several new populations(e.g. Carex sp.) present in more to be fairly rare in Minnesota, and of the species, including a largepermanent pools on outcrops. MCBS staff recommend upgrading population at the new Touch-the- Temporary pool species its status from Special Concern to Sky National Wildlife Refuge ingerminate and rapidly grow during Threatened. Rock County.the short duration of the wetland, Wolf’s spikerush (Eleocharis Pygmy weed (Crassulathen typically change morphology wolfii) — Prior to MCBS, this aquatica) — This tiny succulentfrom aquatic to terrestrial forms overlooked sedge species had been plant in the Crassulaceae had beenthat persist for a few weeks while collected in just three locations recorded once in Rock County instranded in drying mud after surface in the state, all prior to 1968 and 1945. In 1983, several deep-waterwaters have disappeared. The plants from habitats vaguely described on plants of the species were discoveredthen persist the rest of the year specimen labels as “moist areas.” in Namakan Lake in Voyageursthrough extreme heat and drought In 1997, MCBS discovered this National Park. In 2007, twoas seed, spores, or other perennating species growing on the edges of rock individuals of the dwarf, terrestrialparts in dried mud deposits in the pools at Carver Rapids Wayside in form of this species were foundrock depressions until the pools refill the Minnesota valley. In the last stranded on mud in Rock County.with rainwater the next spring. two years, MCBS located several This plant also occurs in vernal In the early 1980s, Welby Smith populations on the margins of Sioux pools in California, where it wasdescribed these unusual rock pools Quartzite pools on the Coteau. found to perform the crassulaceanand their flora and recommended Mudwort (Limosella aquatica) acid metabolism (CAM) modeseveral pool-specialist species — This small, annual scrophwith few records in the state for is uncommon throughout its Continued on page 5 3
  • 4. How do moose affect Impacts of browsing by moose Moose impacts on common,northern forest ecology? widespread deciduous species are most severe on quaking aspen, white birch, mountain ash, mountainLessons from Isle Royale National Park maple, serviceberry, cherry species,by Peter A. Jordan, Department of Density of moose at Isle Royale and beaked hazel; and somewhatFisheries and Wildlife, University has long been higher than in most less so on yellow birch, sugarof Minnesota. This is an abstract of other northern regions of the world maple, Canada fly honeysuckle,his talk at the Nov. 1, 2007 MN NPS where they occur. They first arrived and bush honeysuckle; but almostmeeting. on the island in the early 1900s, and nil on thimble berry, speckled alder, by the 1920s had grown to several and all bog shrubs. Probably mostBackground critical is the stripping of deciduous Isle Royale National Park thousand on this 204-square-mile island, causing conspicuous damage leaves during the growing season,in Lake Superior has long been being more damaging than removalfamed not only as a beautiful and to the forests. of twigs from those same plants inbiologically diverse wilderness, As we measure and interpret winter. One rather rare species, thebut also for the intensively studied, long-term ecological effects, the highly preferred, big-leaf aspen,long-term dynamics of wolves question arises, have moose caused appears vulnerable to completeand moose there. Ecologically, the forests on Isle Royale to become extirpation from the island byhowever, documenting how these far different in composition and/or moose.two elements interact does not structure than those on the adjacentprovide a full understanding of mainland where moose are either not Severe impact on conifersthis ecosystem, because the forage- present or at much lower densities? involves only two species — balsamvegetation segment must be included fir, which would be the most abundant Plant diversity at Isle Royale tree were its reproduction not soas well. For students of native plants, it’s heavily suppressed, particularly at We have been measuring woody interesting that, as a habitat for plants, the western end, and American yew,plants and the impact of moose the island supports a considerably which has been reduced to tiny, veryupon them since the 1960s and are greater diversity of species and forest short twigs without ever bearingnow connecting those data to trends types than similar-sized areas on the “fruit.” White pine, only sparselyin the moose and wolf populations surrounding mainland. For example, present, shows moderately heavythat have been tracked by others — orchid species here number 32 (as browsing on saplings, but scatteredalong with our estimating winter of 1993), and there are a number of individuals are regularly outgrowingmoose numbers from pellet counts. relict species associated with West the moose. Cropping of conifers I joined the long-term moose- Hudson Bay plus the far West. in winter does involve removal ofwolf project in the 1960s to The cold, but winter-long open, productive foliage, more akin tomonitor the animals, but also began waters of Lake Superior provide more summer leaf stripping than winterestablishing permanent plots on moderate temperatures year round, twig removals. White and blackwhich upland shrubs and trees particularly underlying more cool spruce and jack pine, plus juniperswere inventoried, along with how and damp summers. Its topography are essentially never used. Redthese were affected by the foraging includes sharp, parallel ridges and pine, very rare there, is apparentlyof moose (as well as snowshoe depressions, plus swamps and bogs, not used much if at all.hares). This sampling system was along with numerous inland lakes. Long-term effects upon forestsgradually expanded into an island- Moose browsing has suppressed Briefly, the major forest typeswide network of plots wherein many reproduction in most upland tree include northern-hardwood sugar-relevant variables are re-measured maple and yellow-birch; extensive species along with the most commonannually, along with some less-often mixed stands of white birch, quaking conifer since the late 1920s, whenas needed. aspen, balsam fir and white spruce; the recently arrived moose reachedThe issues boreal forests of balsam fir; patches an unusually high number. The Moose feed primarily on woody of jack-pine/black spruce; and overall effect has been to alterplants, taking leaves and new twigs extensive northern white-cedar in composition and structure of muchof deciduous species during the lowlands. Moose forage heavily on of the island’s forest, an effect thatgrowing season, then their dormant most of the common broad-leaf tree can only be seen as mature treestwigs plus the foliage of some and shrub species, but only on one that were present before mooseconifers during the rest of the year. common conifer, balsam fir. arrived eventually die out, but are4
  • 5. not being replaced by their own orother palatable species, as would result (as long as said trends are not caused by us humans). Rock-pool plantsnormally occur. Continued from page 3 Should you visit the west end of of photosynthesis while it is a Successful escape of highly Isle Royale, no doubt stopping at submerged aquatic plant (as dopalatable trees occurred only once the Windigo Ranger Station, a good species of Isoetes).in the 20th century. That was after impression of moose effects can bea very large fire in 1936, followed seen at a moose-exclosure located Mud plantain (Heterantheraby re-vegetation by birch and aspen close-by. Constructed in 1979 limosa) — This species in theso widespread that moose could not where prior vegetation was similar Pontederiaceae was previouslysuppress the saplings. Otherwise, to that outside the exclosure today, known from only two locations ininability of young trees to escape the you can appreciate that as soon as Minnesota. MCBS documentedreach of moose has led to openings moose were excluded, long-hedged two new populations of this speciesin the canopy, forming what we call firs, aspens, and other preferred in rock outcrop pools sustained by“spruce-moose savannas.” hardwoods grew quickly, reaching runoff and groundwater seepage in their nearly full height within 15 Rock County. In these savannas, most woodyplants remain as hedged shrubs, or so years, while the vegetation Slender plantain (Plantagowhile herbage becomes abundant, outside has remained as before — elongata) — This tiny, annual,as in meadows. This affords moose a savanna. Around the outside, the stemless plantain is a western speciesprolonged access to browse, but the mature firs and most mature white that reaches the easternmost edge ofplants eventually decline in size birch present in 1979 have since its United States range in southwestand productivity due to chronic, died and fallen. Minnesota. Previously known fromyear-round (for deciduous ones) Note: A power-point with colored one recent and two old collectionscropping. Meanwhile, slowly but graphics was used for this talk. For in Minnesota, MCBS documentedsurely, white spruce, being totally a copy, contact Peter at pajordan@ just one new population in spite ofunpalatable and free of competition umn.edu much searching.from other woody species, occupiesthe site, eventually dominating the Tip of the season Though more populations of these rare plants have been locatedcanopy. This creates a habitat of no by Beth Nixon in recent years, they are confinedvalue to moose other than as cover. “It won’t hurt if I just dig to a very specific habitat with a one.”  Whether digging wild very limited range in Minnesota. When, after many years, the orchids on private property or Furthermore, the persistence of thespruce reaches mature size and in public places, taking one is native flora on many rock outcropshigh density, it becomes subject to a bad idea.  Many of us love in Minnesota’s prairie region iswildfire. However, the time lapse to own things of beauty and threatened from overgrazing orsince preferred browse species pleasure.  Orchids seem to rock mining. Efforts to protect thesedied out may be so long that their foot that bill for native plant special habitats have included publicroots and seeds may no longer be lovers. We must be mindful land acquisition, environmentalpresent, hence leaving the post- that their beauty is beholden to review of proposed mines, and afire vegetation with little preferred like kinds, other orchids, mossy recent and successful program toforage for moose as normally occurs surfaces, undescribed networks purchase perpetual conservationwhere mixed stands burn. There has of subterranean hyphae, the easements in Renville and Redwoodnot been time for observing whether ecology of rotting matter — a counties.this will occur at Isle Royale, i.e. a symbiology of mystery we can Public awareness and concerncouple of centuries, but it is certainly never create on our windowsills about the plight of these places havea relevant question for researchers and gardens.   Choose not to been instrumental for furthering theat Isle Royale. extract the mystery and awe cause of protecting these habitats The island, as a national park, from wild places. Cultivated in the Minnesota River Valley. Itcannot be managed to produce orchids are commercially appears that there is somewhat lessvegetation that favors certain available, but remind youself public awareness about the uniquevalued animals, as might be done and others to check sources outcrop flora in the inner Prairieon private or Forest Service land, before purchasing. Search for Coteau region. Continued publicIn contrast, the island is a setting a meadow full of wild orchids education about these places andwhere diverse or unexpected trends that can only bring beauty as a assistance for landowners whoin natural ecosystems can be studied collective whole.  Enjoy them, would consider protection optionswithout concern for a particular end but take only pictures.  should be a priority. 5
  • 6. Birds need Field trips plannednative plants “Bringing Nature Home: How by Ken Arndt We have a great line-up of field trips this summer. Due to limited registration, all of the field trips are for MN NPS members only, except thenative plants sustain wildlife in our May trip to Barn Bluff in Red Wing. That trip is open to the public. Forgardens,” by Douglas W. Tallamy, is more detailed information on any of the field trips or to register for a trip,published by Timber Press. go to the field trip page of our website (www.mnnps.org). You can alsoBook review by Joel Dunnette register at our general meetings. I’m a nature nut and enjoy nativeplants for themselves and for their On April 26, at 1 p.m., Barr Engineering Senior Ecologist and MN NPSembodiment of our place in the world. board member Daniel Jones will lead a hike in Nerstrand Big-Woods StateI started liking native plants for the Park near Northfield. Participants will view the early spring ephemeralswonder and variety of interesting of this maple-basswood community and get to brush up on their woodlandinsects they attract and support. But plant ID with Daniel.I now have another reason to plant, “Walk with Thoreau” in Red Wing May 24. Writer Dan Dietrichmaintain and encourage the use of and naturalist Bruce Ause will lead this trip, which is sponsored by thenative vegetation. Anderson Center in Red Wing. This event is free and open to the public.  In “Bringing Nature Home,” Dr. The day will begin at 9 a.m. in the main gallery of the Anderson CenterTallamy explains in an entertaining with brunch and a brief talk by Dietrich on Thoreau’s trip to Red Wing. way how the diversity of our native This will be followed by a walking tour of Barn Bluff from 10:30 a.m.plants supports a much wider variety to 12 noon. Led by Dietrich and Ause, the tour will retrace Thoreau’sand volume of insects than non- exploration of the bluff and locate the many plants and flowers noted innative plants. his journals and letters. The weekend of June 7 and 8 will be a return trip to the Prairie Coteau Why should people care about region of southwestern Minnesota with DNR Botanists/Plant Ecologiststhis? Well, although more people Fred Harris and Nancy Sather. From rock outcrops at Touch the Skyenjoy birds than insects, the National Wildlife Refuge to calcareous fens at Sarah Mason Wildlifeavailability of an abundance and Management Area and a few other sites between, participants will havevariety of insects is critical to birds a close look at many different plant communities. Surveys for the prairieas they raise their young. Baby birds moonwort (Botrychium campestre) and small white lady’s slipper orchideat a lot — and what they eat is (Cypripedium candidum) are also planned.mostly insects. On July 19, we will go north to George Crosby Manitou and Split Gardens of exotic flowers are Rock Lighthouse State Parks with DNR Botanists/Plant Ecologists Chelstarving the wild birds so many of us Anderson and Lynden Gerdes, to follow up this year’s symposium topic,love. Yards of mowed grass, with a the North Shore Highlands. This all-day hike will take society membersfew non-native shrubs, are no place to the interior forests of the northto raise a bird family. Native plants to kill nearly every insect they see. shore and down to the shore of Lakehave evolved to live with native This harms the birds we love. Superior itself for a look at the manyinsects. Each species has its ownkinds of insects that live on and with If we want a world filled with different plants found in this part ofit. These insects not only use native wonder and a variety of creatures, northern Minnesota.plants, but do so without destroying and we continue to take up nearly Saturday, Aug. 2, Steve Eggers,them. all productive land with our houses senior ecologist for the St. Paul and shopping malls, then we need District Corps of Engineers, will lead Native plants support production to provide the native plants that a canoe trip in Weaver Bottoms,of two to five times more insect are essential for the survival of the along the Mississippi River infood than do non-natives. Non- species we value. southeastern Minnesota. Membersnative flowers are unfamiliar to ourinsects and may be “pest free,” This book is full of useful will canoe into the bottoms, wherebut what many people call pests are information, but is also fun to read. American lotus and cardinal floweressential to raising young birds. In Dr. Tallamy is an entomologist will be in bloom, nine-foot tall wildfact, most insects are not harmful to who truly loves nature and clearly rice stands will grace the river, andhumans or crops. We asume guilt communicates that love. If you a diverse assemblage of emergent,by association, so most people try care about birds even a little, you floating and submergent aquatic will enjoy reading this book. vegetation will be seen.6
  • 7. Plant Lore aren’t showy enough, have a short blooming time, and go dormant Native Plantby Thor Kommedahl What is starflower? in mid-summer. Starflower is susceptible to smut caused by Sale is June 5  Starflower is Trientalis borealis, Urocystis trientalis, and voles prefer by Ken Arndtin the primrose family, a common to eat infected over noninfected It is time to get ready for thisspring flower native to Minnesota plants. year’s MN NPS native plant sale atwoodlands. our June 5 meeting. This annual sale helps raise money for the Society. How did it get its names? We encourage members to divide Trientalis in Latin means “a or propagate their own native plantsthird of a foot” because it averages and donate them to our sale.about four inches tall; borealis We will hold the sale outsidemeans “of the north,” and the plant of Dakota Lodge on the patio areais appropriately called northern that overlooks Thompson Lake, asstarflower. Because the petals we did last year. We ask that allresemble a seven-pointed star, it plant material arrive by 6 p.m., sois named starflower. Some refer our volunteers will have time toto this plant as a “plant of sevens” get the sales area set up. The salebecause it usually has seven petals, will take place after our speaker’sseven sepals, seven anthers, and presentation. All members andsometimes even seven leaves. Plants non-members will be allowed towith flower parts in sevens are rare. participate. When the plant sale What does the plant look like?  begins, volunteers will be first to It is a four-inch tall perennial select plants, followed by those whowith rhizomes and tubers (one to donated plant material, then by otherfour per plant). The four to seven members, and finally by visitors.simple leaves appear at the stem We ask that only native plantstip in a whorl without petioles, or from the region (Minnesota/westernvery short ones, and are slender Wisconsin) be included in theand conspicuously veined. Usually sale. No cultivars (horticulturalsingle, sometimes two to three, white selections) should be brought to theflowers with five to nine, but usually sale (e.g. ‘Goldstrum’ black-eyedseven, petals per flower appear Trientalis borealis photo by Peter Susan or ‘Gateway’ Joe-Pye-weed).from May to June. Pollination is by Dziuk Plants should come from your ownnative bees.  Fruits are berry-like property or other private propertycapsules splitting into five sections with that owner’s permission, notwith many tiny seeds. However, Wetland qualityasexual reproduction by tubers is continued from page 1 from public property. Do not bring any plants dug without permission.more important than reproduction methods. Chief among these is the Place the plants in typical nurseryby seeds. Floristic Quality Assessment (FQA). containers with adequate water and Where do these plants grow? FQA relies on the Coefficient of soil. Label them with both common   They are understory plants in Conservatism which is a numerical and scientific names. Prices will berich woods and bogs in conifer- rating of an individual species’ marked by volunteers. We will havehardwood and boreal forests in affinity to natural habitats. FQA plant guides to help with labeling.North America and are abundant in may allow us to move beyond Try to dig your plants at leastpatches. depressional marshes and assess two to four weeks before the sale,Are they medicinal or poisonous? all the different wetland types in especially if you are dividing your  The tubers are neither edible nor Minnesota. plants. That way the plants have timepoisonous and have no medicinal For more information on to get through transplant shock.properties. the MPCA wetland biological A few volunteers are needed to Is it a garden plant? monitoring program, please visit our help with setting up the sales area and assisting members with their   Gardeners shy away from this webpage at: www.pca.state.mn.us/ plants. To volunteer, contact Kenplant in gardens because plants water/biomonitoring/bio-wetlands. html Arndt at ken.arndt@mnnps.org 7
  • 8. Minnesota Native Plant SocietyP.O. Box 20401Bloomington, MN 55420Spring 2008 Directions: Take MN Hwy. 52 to the Butler Ave. E. exit in West St. Paul. Go west on Butler 0.2 miles to Stassen Lane. Go south on Stassen Lane to Thompson County Park.