The Driftless Area Native Plant Society will present local author and photographer Richard Pearce at the Galena Public Library Saturday. Sept. 7 at 2 p.m.
Pearce, the inventor of the wildflower field scanning technique, will present a few of the plants he catalogued for his work, Flora of the Driftless Area.
Pearce has been imaging plants since 2001, when he first developed his field scanning technique where he brings his equipment to the subject. This lets him scan protected species in the field without having to disturb them. The clarity achieved with high resolution scans shows structures that are usually seen only with a microscope. While perfecting his technique he is cataloging as many Upper Mississippi wildflowers as time permits. This plant survey, a mix of art and science as well as a valuable resource for anyone interested in local flora, can be seen at www.arrasimages.com/UMW.html.
Pearce will discuss native plants, not just unique to the Driftless Area, but native to much of the Midwest. He will profile six to eight species, with information that is unique, even odd sometimes. Some of the narratives are on his web site.
Pearce includes naturalized plants and recent invasive species in his survey because some of the naturalized plants have been here in North America for 300 to 400 years and are now part of the established natural flora.
In addition to Pearce’s talk there will be native plant presentations by members and anyone can bring plants they would like to have help in identifying.
The Driftless Area Native Plant Society, a group for individuals interested in learning about and promoting the growth and use of native plants, explores topics about gardening, foraging and conservation of native plants in their monthly meetings. The group meets at the Galena Public Library by the fireplace every first Saturday of the month at 2 p.m.
The group’s goals are to help people take up gardening with native plants to counteract some of the habitat loss caused by development and to reintroduce people to the beauty and biodiversity, and the intricate connections found in native plant communities that not only serve as both food source and habitat for wildlife, but also provide valuable ecosystem services.
Everyone is invited to attend and share what they know and would like to learn more about. For more information, contact Rachel O’Neill or Hendrica Regez, (815) 776-0557, or see the DANPS facebook page, Facebook.com/driftlessnative.