“Biological diversity is the key to the maintenance of the world as we know it.”
~ E.O. Wilson, Biodiversity
The Grow Native! Southwestern Illinois Event Committee presents a rockstar lineup of speakers for an event in Edwardsville, IL on February 26. They’ll present information from the frontline of concepts surrounding the value of native plants in our landscapes.
Who should attend?: Wildlife Habitat Professionals, Landscape Contractors, Land Care Professionals, Growers, Garden Centers, Forest Managers, Arborists, Landscape Architects and Designers, Engineers, Sustainability Managers, Green Building Professionals, Master Naturalists, Master Gardeners, and general landscape enthusiasts.
Doug Tallamy is a professor in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, where he has authored 84 research publications and has taught Insect Taxonomy, Behavioral Ecology, Humans and Nature, Insect Ecology, and other courses for 34 years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities. His book Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens was published by Timber Press in 2007 and was awarded the 2008 Silver Medal by the Garden Writers’ Association. The Living Landscape, co-authored with Rick Darke, was published in 2014. Among his awards are the Garden Club of America Margaret Douglas Medal for Conservation and the Tom Dodd, Jr. Award of Excellence.
As a 20-year veteran of the Garden’s EarthWays Center team, “Green Jean” works with businesses of all types and sizes to implement everyday and innovative sustainability practices, through the St. Louis Green Business Challenge. She also responds to public inquiries with resources, referrals and information as operator of the Garden’s “Planet Doctor” answer service. She has written for GreenBiz.com, Home Energy, Grist and Missouri Resources magazines and many local publications. She produces and hosts weekly environmental talk programs for KTRS-AM and KDHX-FM, serving as a regional media resource for over 26 years. Her areas of expertise include recycling, composting and waste reduction; indoor air quality, energy efficiency, green building, and water conservation – with special current interest in ecological landscaping with native plants.
Rick Macho, Madison County SWCD
Rick is originally from New York and is a graduate of Cornell University with a degree in agricultural engineering. He worked for 25 years with USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in New York and Illinois. He is currently employed by the Madison County Soil and Water Conservation District.
He has assisted with farmers and landowners for planning, design and construction of conservation practices. He administers several state and federal cost share assistance programs in Madison County.
Part of his duties with the Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) includes inspecting all of the current NPDES stormwater permitted sites in Madison County.
Rick has traveled extensively, helping with various environmental studies. He has traveled to: Antarctica, Amazon River Basin, Panama, Costa Rica, Ecuador, New Zealand, the Galapagos Islands, Norway, Iceland, Hawaii, Alaska, the Caribbean, and participated in a dinosaur fossil excavation in Montana.
Becky McMahon, DJM Ecological Services, Inc.
Becky McMahon is a Project Ecologist with DJM Ecological Services, Inc. and Pure Air Natives, Inc. From her experience in both the private and nonprofit sectors, she brings a unique perspective to restoration projects when it comes to fulfilling the client’s goals, being mindful of project budget and timeline concerns, all while respecting the natural ecosystems she’s called on to steward. She supports all aspects of DJM’s projects—from assessing a habitat, guiding installations, and throughout the stewardship phase. Becky serves on the board of The Open Space Council and on numerous technical advisory committees. Dirt under her nails is a sign of a day well spent, be it a day on a job site, or tending to her own urban homestead.
Mitch Leachman, St. Louis Audubon Society
Mitch Leachman is the Executive Director of the St. Louis Audubon Society and coordinator of their Bring Conservation Home program (BCH). Since its kickoff in 2012, the BCH program has provided on-site native landscaping consultations to nearly 600 landowners in the St. Louis region, delivering detailed, written recommendations on how each owner can improve their property for the benefit of birds, butterflies and their own enjoyment. Over 120 of those same landscapes have been certified by BCH, recognizing their value as habitat and other conservation practices already in-place.
Mitch joined the Audubon network in 1997 and has been active with the St. Louis chapter since 2001. On staff since 2008, Mitch plans and coordinates many chapter activities, including Bring Conservation Home, community stewardship projects, fundraising, communications and outreach. www.stlouisaudubon.org
Ellen Nordhauser, Master Gardener and Master Naturalist
ELLEN NORE NORDHAUSER, a retired member of the Department of Historical Studies at SIUE, has lived in Edwardsville for the majority of the last 38 years at the same location. Gradually, the lawn on this city lot (150 X 50) has disappeared and much of it has been replaced by plants native to Illinois, although “exotic” species remain visible and mixed in with the natives. Douglas W. Tallamy’s book, BRINGING NATURE HOME (lst edition, 2007), provided imperative reasons to continue replacing non-native vegetation with native. Her interest in gardening derives from the work of her mother in Nebraska, who always had a large vegetable garden, and who loved to find native flowers in bloom in the pasture and other places. She also liked to watch birds. Since retirement, contacts with the wonderful people who gravitate to Master Naturalist and Master Gardener programs have vastly expanded her horizons. Working on teams with these people has provided a constant education in the workings of the natural world. She is a member of groups who work at The Gardens of SIUE, The Watershed Nature Center in Edwardsville, and Willoughby Farm in Collinsville. Her family’s yard hosts dozens native forbs, sedges, grasses, trees and shrubs. Many of the grasses and forbs have been raised from seeds.
Tom Shirrell, Green Thumb Nursery
Tom Shirrell born and raised in Alton, Illinois has always had a love for plants. His interest started as young as five years old when he would go out into his aunt’s garden and ask her to tell him the names of her flowers. Tom began mowing yards for his parent’s friends as a teenager which sparked his interest in landscaping. Tom even started his very own prairie at his parents’ home.
Tom has a bachelor’s degree in Biology from SIUE and associates in Horticulture from STL community college. He has volunteered for years with Heartland Prairie. He also has many established prairie lots. Tom has his own business which he started in 2013 named Green Thumb Nursery. Tom grows Illinois native prairie grasses and wildflowers and sells them at some local farmer’s market. He raises and grows his plants in his own back yard with a little help from his four year old son Tristan.
Scott Moss, Lewis and Clark Community College
James “Scott” Moss is an instructor at Lewis and Clark Community College in Godfrey, Illinois. He is the program coordinator for Restoration Ecology, Environmental Science, and Stormwater Management, leads a number of initiatives on sustainability, and has been employed by the National Great Rivers Research and Education Center. He has a B.S. – Environment, Ecology, and Evolution and a M.S. In Biology from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Professional affiliations include the Society for Ecological Restoration and the Missouri Prairie Foundation. He is a 28 year veteran of the United States Navy Reserve.
Tom Doyle, HeartLand Prairie
Tom Doyle retired from AT&T in 2010 after 35 years of service. He has been married to my wife, Sue for 31 years, and they have three children: Christina, Meghan and Tim. They bought 16 acres in southern Jersey County in 1986. Along with creating a 3-acre prairie on the property, he has been improving the composition of trees in their woodland through TSI and prescribed fire. He has been a volunteer land steward at Heartland Prairie over 10 years, and thinks any day outdoors is a good day.
Jesse Riechman, Southern Illinois Prescribed Burn Association (SIPBA) Coordinator
Riechman earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Miami University before returning to the Carbondale area for a master’s in Forestry from Southern Illinois University. Jesse became the coordinator for the Southern Illinois Prescribed Burn Association (SIPBA) in 2012, where as an Illinois certified prescribed burn manager he oversees SIPBA burns in the 11 southernmost counties of Illinois. Riechman has served as the State Chair of the Society of American Foresters and as board member for the Friends of Touch of Nature and Friends of the Cache River.
Bill Klunk, The Gardens at SIUE
Bill Klunk is a retired Information Technology Manager. He is 58 years old, married, a U.S. Navy veteran, and lives in Moro, IL. Bill has an Industrial Technology BS degree from Southern Illinois University (SIU) at Carbondale and an Information Management MS degree from Washington University in St. Louis (WUSTL), MO. He is currently both a certified University of Illinois Extension Master Naturalist and Master Gardener.
He volunteers regularly at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville (SIUe) as a Master Gardener supporting the campus 35 acre botanical gardens. Bill Klunk also volunteers as a Master Naturalist at both SIUe and The Nature Institute’s (TNI) Heartland Prairie in Alton, IL. He participates in prairie and woodland restoration activities at both locations. Bill actively serves on the University of Illinois Extension Madison, Monroe, St. Clair Unit Technical Committee and co-authors the Phenology Report in the unit’s monthly newsletter, Under The Canopy. He has also authored hunting articles and a regional Invasive Species Awareness article for the unit.
Bill is a lifelong vegetable gardener and forester. He is actively executing a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) on his private property through an Illinois Department of Natural Resources program. The ecological goal of the CMP is to restore 13 acres of woodland and 4 acres of grassland back to its pre-1818 natural condition.
Lyle Guyon, National Great Rivers Research and Education
Dr. Lyle Guyon has been working for the National Great Rivers Research & Education Center (NGRREC) as a terrestrial ecologist since 2005, where his activities are primarily focused on floodplain forest ecology and management in the Upper Mississippi River System. Research and monitoring projects have included assessments of ecological characteristics of floodplain forests; the establishment of a long-term floodplain forest monitoring network in the UMRS; invasive species control and management; and extensive habitat surveys conducted for federal and state agencies. Dr. Guyon and his team regularly provide technical assistance to the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Additional responsibilities include teaching a summer field course at the University of Illinois and NGRREC; coordinating NGRREC’s management of the Palisades Nature Preserve and other environmental research and demonstration areas; and general oversight and management of NGRREC’s terrestrial ecology program and associated field staff.
Dr. Guyon received a PhD in Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences and a MS in Forestry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
7:30 a.m. Registration, Breakfast, Visit Exhibitors. The breakfast menu includes orange juice and coffee; assorted breakfast breads; sausage strata; yogurt; and fresh fruit salad.
8:25 a.m. Remarks by Edwardsville Mayor Hal Patton
8:15 a.m. Welcome and Introductions
8:30–9:30 a.m. Keynote: Doug Tallamy
Hear from nationally renowned speaker why our landscapes need native plants.
9:30–10:30 a.m. Panel Discussion: How-To of Native Plants
Moderator: Jean Ponzi, Missouri Botanical Garden
Learn key concepts and methods for integrating natives on your land.
10:30–10:45 a.m. Break, Visit Exhibitors
10:45–11:45 a.m. PechaKucha Sessions: “Success Stories”
Introductory Remarks: Dale Chapman, President of Lewis and Clark
Learn how speakers plant natives, promote pollinators, and practice sound stewardship in this dynamic presenation format!
11:45 a.m. Closing Remarks
12:00 p.m. Workshop Concludes
Lewis and Clark Community College, LeClaire Room at the Nelson Center
600 Troy Rd
Edwardsville, IL 62025
Directions: The Nelson Center is just south of downtown Edwardsville at 600 Troy Road. Park in the lots marked “Hale Parking Lot” and “MCT Parking Lot.” Look for signs.
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