September 23, 2017, Coosa Prairies, Part 2, Floyd County, GA

Posted under: Northwest Georgia.

Nabalus barbatus

Date: Saturday, September 23. Meet at 10:00 AM Sunoco Gas Station, 150 Gadsden Rd SW, Cave Spring, GA 30124, Floyd County 

Description: Part 2 of the Coosa Prairies field trips finds us examining a completely different set of flowers from Part 1. Late summer and early fall is when most species of composites on the prairies come into bloom. Some plants we hope to find: At least 9 species of Asters including New England Aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae), Tickseed Sunflower (Bidens polylepis), Swamp Thistle (Cirsium muticum), Narrow-leaf Sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius), Whorled Sunflower (H. verticillatus), Blazing Star (Liatris squarrulosa), Prairie Lion’s Foot (Nabalus barbatus), Orange Coneflower (Rudbeckia fulgida), White-flowered Goldenrod (Solidago ptarmicoides), Riddell’s Goldenrod (S. riddellii), and Stiff Goldenrod (S. rigida).

Note: Meeting Place has been changed!

Directions: Take I-75 north to the second Cartersville exit (exit 290, GA 20). The sign says Rome / Canton. Turn left (west) on Ga. 20. Follow Ga. 20 and then US 411 to Rome, around 20 miles. In Rome, Ga. 20 and US 411 will split. Follow US 411 (left fork) toward Cave Spring. At 2nd traffic light turn right (stay on US 411) and follow all the way to Cave Spring. At traffic light in Cave Spring, turn right to remain on US 411. Go approx. 1 mi., meet at Sunoco Gas Station, 150 Gadsden Rd SW, Cave Spring, GA 30124, on the right, northwest corner of US 411 and GA 100.

Sunoco Gas Station
150 Gadsden Rd SW
Cave Spring, GA 30124

Bring: Lunch to eat near cars, not carried on walk; extra water, bug spray, cameras, rain gear. 

Walking: Easy, mostly flat terrain, 1-2 mi., depending on road conditions.

Facilities: Meeting site only

Helianthus verticillatus

Leader(s): Richard & Teresa Ware – 706-232-3435 – (cell) 706-766-5143 – gabotany@comcast.


October 7, 2017, Early Fall Wildflowers of North Georgia, Union County

Posted under: North Georgia.

Description: Early fall is a wonderful time to see some of Georgia’s rarest and most colorful wildflowers. This trip will take us to at least three locations in the north central part of the state, including areas near Young Harris and Suches.  Plants we hope to see in bloom include 3 Gentians:  the beautiful and rare Fringed Gentian (Gentianopsis crinita), Stiff Gentian (Gentianella quinquefolia), and Soapwort Gentian (Gentiana saponaria).  Also, two species of Parnassia: Kidney-Leaf Grass-of-Parnassus (Parnassia asarifolia), and the rare and ornately veined Large-Leaf Grass-of-Parnassus (Parnassia grandifolia).  In addition: two aptly named plants: Monkshood (Aconitum uncinatum), and White Turtlehead (Chelone glabra).  We also hope to see White Goldenrod (Solidago bicolor), and perhaps a couple species of Ladies’Tresses (Spiranthes sp.).

Meet:  10:00 am at the Chevron station near the intersection of US 76 and Track Rock Gap Rd between Blairsville and Young Harris, GA.

Grass-of-Parnassus on Wild Hog Creek

Directions:  I-75 to I-575 north to GA 5/515 to Blue Ridge, GA, then east on US 76/ GA 515 to Blairsville.  From the intersection of US 76 and US 19/129 in Blairsville, continue heading east on HY 76/515  toward Clayton, GA for about 6.4 miles. Meet at the Chevron Station on the left. If you come to Track Rock Gap Rd (or to Young Harris), you have come too far.

Bring:  Lunch to eat on the trip.

Facilities:  At meeting site.

Walking:  Easy, near cars, with a short bushwhack walk near the monkshood site.

Trip Leaders:  Mike Christison,, 770-973-6482 (H), 770-596-3564 (Cell phone for day of trip), and Richard & Teresa Ware,, 706-232-3435 (H), 706-766-5143 (Cell phone for day of trip).

Sunday, October 8, 2017 – Fungal Foray,  Lake Winfield Scott, Union County

Posted under: North Georgia.

Trip Leader:  Bill Sheehan
 This is an easy to moderate walk with some easy off-trail walking in and about Lake Winfield Scott National Recreation Area.  We will be looking for fleshy mushrooms and any other fungi we come across, both large and small.  Our emphasis will be on diversity and ecology. We have permission to collect one or two samples of what we find, which we will bring back to a central location, spread out, and review at the end.  Fungi are the primary decay organisms that cycle plants back into plants.  Other fungi – most of the mushrooms growing on the ground in the woods — are critical enablers of plant nutrition through roots.  With perhaps 4,000 species of fungi (not to mention slime molds) in the Georgia mountains, we’ll have lots to work with!  For botanists, come learn about “the rest of the story…”

Directions:  From Atlanta, take GA 400 north for about 60 miles, until it ends just south of Dahlonega.  Turn left there onto Ga Hwy 60 and take GA 60 toward and around Dahlonega.  Continue for about 15 miles on Hwy 60, heading toward Suches through the National Forest.  You will drive through Stone Pile Gap, bearing to the left at the pile of rocks to stay on GA 60. Continue uphill, crossing Woody Gap, then going downhill, passing Woody Lake on the right.  Shortly after the lake, watch for Ga Hwy 180 on the right (there is a service station/convenience store at that corner).  Turn right on Hwy 180 and go for about 4.5 miles.  Turn right into Lake Winfield Scott Recreation Area, stop to pay the $5 entrance fee, then continue to the parking area above the lake. 
Meet At:  Park in the parking lot above Lake Winfield Scott bath house and walk back downhill to meet at the trailhead by 10:00 AM.
Facilities:  At the convenience store and at the bathhouse on the lake near the meeting site.
Walking:  Mostly easy to moderate, slow, poking about in the woods. Total distance about 1.5 miles, about 4 hours.
Lunch:  Bring lunch to eat when we review our “haul.”
Bring:  Five dollars per vehicle for entrance fee to Lake Winfield Scott (less with federal senior pass), sturdy shoes for walking, rain gear (you never know!), lunch, extra water.  A hand lens and small basket would be useful.
Contact:  Bill Sheehan,, 706-247-2500

Monday, October 9, 2017  (Columbus Day), Blackjack Crossing Nature Conservancy Preserve,  Talbot County

Posted under: Middle Georgia.

Meet: 10:00 at the intersection of US 80 and GA 96 in Geneva.

Description:  Blackjack Crossing is a Nature Conservancy Preserve in the Fall Line sandhills of West-Central Georgia.  Wildflower season in the sandhills is in the autumn and we should see good displays of typical sandhill species, including elegant blazing star (Liatris elegans), the protected sandhill goldenaster (Pityopsis pinifolia), sandhill wild-buckwheat (Eriogonum tomentosum), the rare Michaux’s Whitlow-wort (Paronychia herniarioides ), at least two species of jointweed (Polygonella) and a variety of other fall wildflowers, especially in the Aster family.  This is also a good time for grasses, including lopsided Indiangrass (Sorghastrum secundum), sandhills dropseed  (Sporobolus junceus), and two species of wiregrass (Aristida).  We will walk over a sandhill to a seepage bog that has another unique set of plants.  There we will look for sweet pitcher plant (Sarracenia rubra) and parrot pitcher plant (Sarracenia psittacina), as well as sundews (Drosera) and other unique bog plants.  All of this will be in a setting of rolling hills, longleaf pine and the occasional gopher tortoise burrow.

Directions to Meeting Location: The entrance to Blackjack Crossing can be hard to find, so we will meet at the USA Gas station at the intersection of US80 and GA 96 in Geneva, then caravan to the field trip site.

Bathroom Facilities: None at Blackjack Crossing. 

Walking Difficulty: Easy.  We’ll be on deep sand roads at first, and then do some off-trail walking (crossing a field).  The bog is a sensitive area, so we will restrict access to the edges and just a few visitors at a time.  Total walking distance will be less than 1.5 miles

Bring: Hand lens, water, snacks, curiosity.  Dress for the weather. The sandhills can be very bright, a broad-brimmed hat and sunglasses can be useful.

Trip Leader: Hal Massie, 478-957-6095 (cell reception is fair in the area)


Saturday, October 14,  2017, 10:00-1:00, Pollinator Power Workshop, Chattahoochee Nature Center, Fulton County

Posted under: Atlanta area; Workshops.

Pollinator Power — A part presentation/part workshop at Chattahoochee Nature Center – classroom  (exact room TBD), Chattahoochee Nature Center.

Location:  9135 Willeo Rd, Roswell, GA 30075

Trip Leader: Eddi Minche

Description: Eddi is a beekeeper with an appreciation for all pollinators and the native plants needed to sustain them – a professional woods wanderer and entomologist wannabe. This is a three hour gathering that is part talk, discussion and information sharing, part workshop and part walkabout.  The first part will cover the basics — what is pollination, why it is so vital, and of course the pollinators.   Hands on and handouts will provide information on how to identify some of our most important pollinators and how to sustain them with a pollinator friendly yard.  Seeds for two native plants important to pollinators will be provided along with information on how to successfully grow them.  

The last portion of this event will be a walk around the gardens, looking for pollinators and observing the plants that attract them .

Bring: Sandwich, water or snack if desired, we’re meeting over lunch, Also bring a hand lens if available.

Registration required and limited to 25.  Registration fee $10. Register online at:


Thursday, November 16, 2017, SE Georgia Pitcherplant Bog Work Day

Posted under: South Georgia.

SE Georgia Pitcherplant Bog Work Day

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Field Trip Leader: Lisa Kruse

Description: Join forces with the Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance for some down-and-dirty Autumn Bogging! This is a pitcherplant habitat restoration work day as well opportunity for learning about herbaceous bog ecology and plants. The task will be to hand-cut shrubs or grasses away from pitcherplants to improve their access to sunlight and water. You can’t beat a (hopefully) cool November day for getting a lot of work done. Most of the fall wildflower show will be over, but the unique structures of autumn grasses and flower seed-heads couldn’t be lovelier when fresh in November.

Canoochee Bogs are the one Georgia location for Sarracenia purpurea var. venosa (Coastal Plain purple pitcherplant). We will also see vigorous Sarracenia flava (trumpet pitcher plant), and Sarracenia minor (hooded pitcherplant). The un-burned bogs have nice floristic diversity in their own right, but after working we will treat ourselves to botanizing at a regularly burned bog with longleaf pine wiregrass uplands. We’ll keep eyes open for late blooms, and seed-heads of Balduina atropurpurea (purple honeycomb head) and Macranthera flammea (hummingbird flower). We also have opportunity to see Elliottia racemosa, Georgia Plume (not in bloom), in old-growth longleaf sandhill in addition to pitcherplant bog habitat.

We expect to work for 3-4 hours. We will have a short but rich botanical foray after the work party and expect to finish by 4 or 4:30 PM. Afterwards, for those who are able, we will continue in the bogging spirit by diving into delicious Harry’s Barbeque nearby in the town of Hagen.

Meeting Location: We will meet at the location below and caravan to the work site

10:00 AM, town of Bellville, Evans County, at the SW corner of the intersection of State Hwys. 292 and 169. There is a good parking lot here at a restored train depot.

Bring: Work gloves, hand-pruners, loppers, and/or a trowel. Sun protection is critical, as well as lunch and water!

Walking Difficulty: Easy to moderate. We will be able to drive near to the bog edges. Total walking distance is less than 1 mile. However there are no trails to access the pitcher plant habitats, so off-trail walking on uneven, moist terrain through 1-2 foot tall vegetation is required. There is a possibility for walking across shallow water or small streams.

Bathroom Facilities: There are no facilities at the work party sites.

Bernie’s Grocery at the meeting location in Bellville has a basic restroom and snacks

Lodging suggestion: Cabins and camping are available at Gordonia-Alatamaha State Park in Reidsville. THESE ARE POPULAR ON FALL WEEKENDS. Make reservations soon.

Contact: Lisa Kruse,   Please email Lisa if you plan to attend.

Phone (for day of trip only): 706-318-3287