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NORTH AMERICAN PLANT ASSOCIATION

TO SOW A SEED IS A NOBLE DEED;  PROPAGATION IS CONSERVATION (Professor Emeritus Norm Deno, State College, Pennsylvania, USA)
 
Secretary and Editor:  Chris Chadwell      Slough, Berks  ENGLAND

 

 e-mail: chrischadwell261@btinternet.com   to receive an APPLICATION FORM.


Enjoy Growing and Studying plants originating in the USA and Canada - very much an under-utilised resource in British gardens and no doubt in other parts of the world. Presumably, plants from the Himalaya (my speciality) or China have attracted greater attention as they were viewed as more "exotic".  Yet a vast array of plants from a wide range of conditions in different parts of N.America, mean there is something for almost all tastes. We shall cater for a wide range of interests and backgrounds amongst the membership - all are made welcome and valued. The main emphasis will be on plants which are likely to prove hardy in the UK (and similar climates) or require a minimum of protection, when being cultivated.


A selection of genera with species of ornamental merit found in North America: Amelanchier, Anemone, Aquilegia (Columbines), Balsamorhiza, Boykinia, Calochortis, Camassia (Camas), Castilleja (Paintbrushes), Clarkia, Claytonia (Spring Beauties), Clematis, Cornus, Delphinium (Larkspur), Dicentra, Dodecatheon (Shootingstars), Erigeron, Eriogonum, Erythronium (Dog's-tooth Violets), Fritillaria, Gaultheria, Helianthus, Iris, Lewisia, Lupinus (Lupines), Mahonia, Oenothera (Evening Primroses), Mertensia, Mimulus,  Monarda, Opuntia, Penstemon, Philadelphus, Phlox, Phyllodoce, Polemonium, Rudbeckia, Sisyrinchium, Trillium (Wakerobins), Vaccinium, Viola (Violets)

'Arrowleaf Balsamroot' (BALSAMORHIZA  SAGITTATA)

 

What do you get for your annual subscription to the North American Plant Association?  

Three LIBERALLY illustrated digital journals/year (February, June & October), access to one of the highest quality Seed Exchanges (albeit modest numerically) anywhere in the world; meetings around the UK (where plant exchanges will take place)

'Bitteroot' (LEWISIA  REDIVIVA)


Annual Subscription Rate:  £10 (payable by pay pal, [there will be a small additional amount to cover their transaction charges] by cheque [only for UK members], or cash  [£10 sterling, $14* dollars or 13* Euros] * These figures (as of July 2016) are much lower than previously, due to drop in value of sterling!  Membership of most serious societies is treble this amount.....


BACKGROUND


Chris has a long-standing interest in North American plants. His degree project was about Lupinus (which is well-represented in the region)whilst he has been able to visit the US and Canada on several occasions since 1980.  He owes a considerable debt to numerous members of the North American Rock Garden Society who both hosted him during these lecture tours and eagerly showed off their fascinating native flora during trips into the hills and mountains, along with North American plants being grown in their own gardens and the public gardens he was shown around from The New York Botanic Garden to the University of Berkeley at San Francisco.

INFORMATION ABOUT THE ASSOCIATION

This is an informal association founded in 2017 along similar lines to 'The Himalayan Plant Association' which was established in 1990 and has run since then (with a break from 2013-2015).  Membership will be world-wide, covering horticulturists, botanists (amateur and professional), hobbyists, and those with just a general interest in the region. Our journals will well-illustrated, produced digitally as PDFs, sent by e-mail. Through these and  events, the Association aims to bring together and spread information on plants from North America.  The association’s web presence is currently a section within this site.

'Shooting Star' (DODECATHEON)


CULTIVATION

 

Thought-provoking articles will appear in our journals on cultivation, propagation, plant profiles, accounts of botanic and other gardens growing North American plants. Chris encourages members to submit informal notes and articles.  Editors of all specialist horticultural journals are constantly on the look out for accounts of first-hand cultivation experiences – they are aware that their members have valuable knowledge. Too many articles and indeed books, are full of second-hand “know-how” just copied from other articles and books!  Unfortunately, such out-put can then be consumed un-critically, ending up as ‘conventional wisdom’ amongst gardeners.  Our Secretary, during several lecture tours to both the West and East Coasts in the US & Canada, has had the opportunity to visit quite a number of parts of North America often being escorted to view the best of the local flora by experts and seen a wide variety of such flora being grown in the private gardens of his hosts plus being shown "behind-the-scenes" of botanical gardens open to the public.  Association members are in an ideal position to share what they know and are actively encouraged to do so. 


'Lupine' (LUPINUS)


Chris was taking an interest in North American plants before his first visit, to California in 1983 to meet retired American botanist Dr Ralph Stewart, who had spent a life-time studying the flora of Pakistan and Kashmir.  In fact his final year project submitted in partial fulfilment of a B.Sc. (Hons) in Botany, Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Southampton was entitled 'Where does Lupinus belong? An investigation into the classification of the genus, with particular reference to morphological features'.  The taxonomic status of the genus Lupinus was investigated.  Both traditional and statistical methods of analysing the data on morphological characters were used.  The results clearly showed that the present classification of Lupinus, within the tribe Genisteae should be questioned.  These findings were discussed, to attempt to justify the suggestion that Lupinus should be awarded the status of a separate tribe.  Additional information on chemical distributions and other new data were included in an attempt to support this view.  Suggestions for further work that would help to resolve the problem are given.  The genus Lupinus includes over 200 species, with centres of diversity in  North and South America.  A number of cultivated species of lupins along with related genera found in N.America incl. 'False Lupin' (Thermopsis montana) and 'Cream Wild Indigo' (Baptisia bracteata) were examined during the project.


SEED EXCHANGE

 

Our Seed Exchange (details are sent out with the February Journal) will be of the highest quality, both in terms of viability of seed offered and accuracy of identification - most other seed exchanges, large or small contain a high proportion of items which are misidentified.  Chris can help check the identity of seed submitted.  Given the increasing rules and regulations which are restricting access to wild-collected seed, it makes sense to devote energy to developing seed exchanges further and contributing to their quality by learning from Chris how to more reliably identify plants being grown in our gardens. 

 

CONSERVATION

 

We highlight GENUINE conservation issues relating to the flora of North America.

'Spreading Phlox' (PHLOX  DIFFUSA)

TRAVEL

 

Chris is happy to advise members on exploring for plants in North America both in the wild and gardens – whether as independent travellers or within an organised group.  During the 1980s he escorted a number of ‘botanical tours’ in the Western Himalaya, so understands what plant enthusiasts are looking for.  Or “look back on” and “relish” your trip by sending Chris images of plants seen, so he can help name them for you – maybe then sharing your experiences by being encouraged to submit an article describing your travels in the US or Canada in our journal.  This is a way you can contribute to the association.

 

BOTANY

A plant identification service is offered – whether of specimens in cultivation of known North American origin or photographed in the US or Canada.



'Yellowbell' (FRITILLARIA  PUDICA)


MEETINGS and PLANT EXCHANGES

 

These will be an important aspect of the association, allowing members to meet fellow enthusiasts.  Chris makes an effort to arrange these all over the UK.  Numbers attending are modest, typically 6-10, enabling a special atmosphere to develop, never possible with larger group outings – the association, through Chris' contacts will be able to secure privileged access “beind-the-scenes”.  At such gatherings Chris usually gives a digital presentation about plants seen on his travels in North America, bearing in mind the interests of those present.  Often there is a second presentation by another member, lunch and either a tour of the host’s garden or a visit to a nearby botanical garden or specialist nursery where North American plants are well-represented. There is also the opportunity to exchange plants of North American origin with those attending. We all have different tastes and succeed in raising some specimens but not others – so this is an ideal way to enrich members' gardens. 



'Sand Penstemon' (PENSTEMON  ACUMINATUS)


You don't have to only or primarily, grow North American plants to be a member of the association - there is plenty of interest within the journals and other aspects of being a member for any CONNOISSEUR of plants, now matter where they come from!


 SO WHY NOT JOIN TODAY?


Contact Chris for an APPLICATION FORM by e-mail on: chrischadwell261@btinternet.com  - if you choose to pay using pay pal, he will send YOU a payment request, so do advise him if you have a separate e-mail/account for such payments. 

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