About WNPS
Contact WNPS
Online Store
Visit our Blog

Invasive Species
Plant Lists

Local Chapters
Field Trips
Plant Sales

Photo Gallery

Starflower Resources
Education Resources
Native Plants

WNPS Stewards


Central Puget Sound Chapter Programs

Welcome to CPS Programs

The Central Puget Sound Chapter holds its monthly programs
on the Westside and Eastside on a rotating basis.

When in Seattle, meet the first Thursday of the month.   Start at 7:00 PM.
When in Bellevue, meet on the second Tuesday of the month.  Start at 7:00 PM.

A free plant identification workshop precedes Seattle meetings.  Start at 6:00 PM. 

Please check the listings below for details. 

 Upcoming Programs

Date Speaker   Title Location
July & August      

Enjoy what the summer may bring!

September 7 Kim Traverse   Fungi - the Original Network Mountaineers   
October 10 Jennifer Hahn   Pacific Feast: Where the Wild Things are Delicious! Bellevue Botanical Garden




*Driving Directions -- click on the links below for directions to each venue.


Center for Urban Horticulture

Bellevue Botanical Garden


Recent programs

Bellevue Botanical Garden Present and Future

Tues. June 13, 2017   7:00 pm
Bellevue Botanical Garden, Aaron Education Center
12001 Main St, Bellevue, WA 98005

by Nancy Kartes

Nancy Kartes will share her unique perspective in a look back at the vision, planning, and collaboration that contributed to Bellevue Botanical Garden’s phenomenal success.    She will provide a glimpse into plans for future development that will position the Garden well for the next 25 years.  Her presentation will be followed by a short tour of future project sites, and the newly opened Urban Meadow, which incorporates native plants and pollinator attractants.   Please dress for the weather!  

Nancy Kartes discovered the joys of public gardens through student internships while earning a bachelor’s degree in Ornamental Horticulture at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. After graduation, Nancy joined the development staff of the National Tropical Botanical Garden in Hawaii, where she was later promoted to assistant director.

Returning to the Mainland, she was hired by the City of Bellevue’s Parks & Community Services Department in Washington State to transform the dreams of local community organizers into a flourishing botanical garden. Under her leadership, the Bellevue Botanical Garden has grown from a 36-acre property to 53-acres with curated living collections managed in partnership with nine horticultural organizations. In addition to collections — enjoyed by over 200,000 visitors annually — the Garden has a thriving garden shop and espresso bar and hosts community building events year-round. Nancy manages the partnership with the Bellevue Botanical Garden Society, a nonprofit that provides educational programming, hosts events and raises funds on behalf of the Garden.


Gardening with Native Plants

Monday June 5, 2017   7:00 pm
Sammamish Library
825 228th Ave SE, Sammamish, WA  98075


Presented by Marcia Rivers Smith 

'Gardening with Native Plants' will discuss the 'What, Why, How, and Where' of using native plants in landscaping. It will cover a variety of different garden situations and suggest native plants that might be used in each. The focus will be on native plants that are available through local nurseries or plant sales. She will have a plant list and growing conditions handout for the group. The presentation will start at 7:00, and at 8:00 we will take a walk down through the Native Plant Garden in Sammamish’s Lower Commons Park for some hands-on discussion. This event is a great primer for those new to natives of the Pacific Northwest - be sure to invite anyone you know who’s still on the fence about giving our natives a try! 

Marcia Rivers Smith has been a Native Plant Steward for 20 years and served on the WNPS Central Puget Sound Chapter Board for several years. Her volunteer focus has been educating others about gardening with native plants, but she has also led plant identification walks. She and her husband have lived on 5 acres in Preston for over 25 years, where they have used native plants to reduce the use of water and chemicals in their landscaping as well as to attract wildlife.

Thursday, June 1

Revising the
"Flora of the Pacific Northwest"

What Did We Learn and What’s Next

By David Giblin

The “Flora of the Pacific Northwest” is the authoritative field identification manual for the region’s vascular plants. First published in 1973, under the leadership of C. Leo Hitchcock and Arthur Cronquist, this widely-used resource has become out of date due to the discovery of new species, the arrival of new weeds, and advances over the past 40 years in the classification and taxonomy of vascular plants in general.

At the time of its publication, users of the Flora could arrive at a currently accepted name for nearly all taxa with in the region, using the keys provided. Now users of the 1973 Flora can achieve similar results for only 47% of the region’s taxa.  The revised "Flora" is due for publication in winter/spring 2018.  David will walk us through the important findings of the project as well as what is on the horizon for the Herbarium as this project draws to a close.

David Giblin manages the University of Washington Herbarium, which is the botanical research collection of the Burke Museum. He earned his Ph.D. in Biology at the University of Missouri and also holds an M.S. in Forest Science from the University of Washington. His research focuses on the floristics of PNW vascular plants. In addition to studying the vascular plant flora of the Pacific Northwest, he is an editor for the Flora of North America project, interim Editor for Douglasia, oversees the Plants of Washington Image Gallery, and collaborates on the producing wildflower identification apps and field guides.

7:30 pm
The Mountaineers Cascade Room, 7700 Sand Point Way NE

 Thursday, May 4

Linda Ann Vorobik
A Yankee Botanist's Search
For New Zealand Bush

Center for Urban Horticulture, 7:30 pm

This botanical travelogue begins on the North Island of New Zealand, and extends to the southernmost tip of the South Island, providing examples of many different habitats and species of the New Zealand flora. Linda's particular interest is the ferns, and New Zealand doesn't disappoint: from delicate filmy ferns through magnificent tree ferns. Linda compares the New Zealand flora to that of our own west coast and discusses the native vegetation versus non-native, as well as other aspects of this delightful country.

Linda Ann Vorobik, PhD botanist, editor, and illustrator of numerous botanical publications has lived on Lopez Island since 1994, but before that spent summers and weekends at her beloved family home on Lopez.

Linda went to school in north Seattle, did her undergraduate work at Western Washington University (then a College), and received her PhD from the University of Oregon. Both of her degrees are in Biology: Linda is enthralled by the great diversity of plants in our wonderful world.

She conducts field research throughout the west, and teaches at the Siskiyou Field Institute in SW Oregon, the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden, at Hawaii's South Kona Society for Education and the Arts, and at other locations.

Linda has over 25 years of botanical experience, and is principal illustrator of, for example, The Jepson Manual: Vascular Plants of California, The Flora of Santa Cruz Island, and is currently working on drawings for The Flora of Santa Catalina Island. For more information, please visit her website, www.VorobikBotanicalArt.com.

Linda will be bringing some of her botanically inspired art work which will be available for purchase.  She donates 35% of any proceeds back to the Chapter!

Program produced by Shelley Evans and Sharon Baker

Tuesday April 25
Richard Ramsden
"Seeking Western Wildflowers"

Tues. April 25 7:00 pm
Bellevue Botanical Garden, Aaron Education Center
12001 Main St, Bellevue, WA 98005

Richard Ramsden will provide an examination of wildflowers in their native habitats from roadsides to mountain peaks of Washington. Native species discussed will include many rare or rarely seen. Their unique qualities will be highlighted as well as suggestions on where to see them this spring and upcoming summer. The program is intended for everyone with an interest in native plants: beginner or advanced, hiker or gardener.

The speaker is a longtime member of WNPS. Besides travelling extensively throughout Washington to seek out wildflowers in their native habitats, he also cultivates many in his Seattle garden and nursery. His photos have been included in many articles and books on western natives and his talks on this topic have been shared with groups from Vancouver BC to Portland OR.

Refreshments, Public Invited, Admission is free.

Thursday, March 2
Peter Stekel
"Best Wildflower Hikes in Western Washington"

Rainier Meadows Photo Credit: Mary Ingels

March 2, 7:30 pm
Mountaineers Headquarters in Magnuson Park,
7700 Sand Point Way NE
Cascade Room

We enjoyed a perambulation through some of Western Washington's premier wildflower habitat - surprising and not - and known, little known, or somewhat forgotten gems of landscape. There will be plenty of photos, hints on not only where to go for wildflower displays but when to go to see the best. Peter Stekel will also walk you through the history of botanical exploration in our region, what and what not to bring on hikes, and attempt to navigate you through the roiling and confusing waters of trail permits.

Peter Stekel is an award-winning writer with over 700 magazine and newspaper feature stories published since 1991. He is author of one other hiking guide, BEST HIKES NEAR SEATTLE (FalconGuides). He has also authored two World War II aviation histories: FINAL FLIGHT - The Mystery of a WWII Plane Crash and the Frozen Airmen in the High Sierra (Wilderness Press) and BENEATH HAUNTED WATERS: Two World War II B-24 Bombers Lost in California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains (Lyons Press).

Mark Darrach
"Floristic Surprises in the Blue Mountains"


Photo credit: Richard Droker

February 2, 2017
Mountaineers Headquarters in Magnuson Park,
7700 Sand Point Way NE
Cascade Room

The Blue Mountain Province is made up of several distinct mountain ranges (the Wallowa, Elkhorn, Greenhorn, Aldrich and Strawberry Mountains) interspersed by the valleys between them. Variability in the vertical terrain (the tallest peaks reaching almost 10,000 feet) and an interesting geologic history are in turn reflected by a diverse flora.  Mark Darrach has spent many a field season exploring the area and will share with us some of the floristic surprises the area has to offer.

He is a rare plant conservation botanist with the U.S. Forest Service, Umatilla National Forest, stationed in Pendleton, Oregon.  He is also a research associate with the WTU Herbarium at the Burke Museum in Seattle where he works as a plant systematics specialist focusing on the regional flora and the western U.S. in general.  He is the author of the Lomatium and Cymopterus treatments for the upcoming revised edition of Hitchcock and Cronquist, and is coauthor of the Lomatium treatment for the upcoming Flora of North America volume 13.

December 1:  Robert Efird and
his work developing an ethnobotanic
garden at Seattle University. 

Botany-Plant ID Workshop w/ CPS Botanists

Center for Urban Horticulture, 7:30 pm
3501NE 41st. Seattle WA

How can native plants be incorporated into the curricula of K-12 schools and universities in Washington State? What can the plants teach us? In his presentation, Dr. Efird will introduce the creation and use of Seattle University’s taqwsheblu Vi Hilbert Ethnobotanical Garden, and discuss his current project to promote the adoption of native plant gardens in Washington State middle schools.  This program will be extended with a tour of the SU Ethnobotanical Garden, lead by Dr. Efird, in the spring.  In a phrase from the Lushootseed culture, “The Earth
is our First Teacher”.

Rob Efird is an applied cultural anthropologist with a special interest in environmental education and collaborative research with community partners. He is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and Asian Studies in Seattle University’s Department of Anthropology, Sociology and Social work and also has an Associate appointment in the Asian Studies Program and in Environmental Studies.  His Ph.D. in Socio-cultural Anthropology was completed at UW in 2004.  He also holds degrees from Yale and Harvard.  Dr. Efird’s current research is focused on children’s environmental learning both in China and here in the Pacific Northwest.  In addition to being an active volunteer on the Discovery Park Advisory Council, Rob also worked with the Seattle University grounds crew and the local Native American community to create the taqwsheblu Vi Hilbert Ethnobotanical Garden at Seattle University.

November 3: Tim Billo, Sword Fern Die-off in Seward Park: A Research Update

The sleuthing goes on!  For several years now, sword ferns in an area of Seward Park have been dying, and the problem is getting worse.  Dr. Billo will share the work to date to unravel this mystery.  He’ll review the multiple etiologies that have been explored and share the hypotheses the research team has developed.  He will also share the team’s plans for experimental work to test their hypotheses and to identify restoration solutions.  The need for extensive monitoring in Seward and other parks will be discussed.  Finally, Dr. Billo will place this challenge in the context of anthropogenic climate change and other human pressures.

Tim Billo is a Lecturer in the UW Environmental Studies Program.  He received his PhD from the UW Biology department in 2011. His undergraduate degree also, in biology, was earned at Williams College in Massachusetts. Over his career as a biologist he has worked on the ecology and evolution of birds and plants, in both tropical and temperate ecosystems. His current focus is on undergraduate education, including the facilitation of research experiences for undergraduates. His many course offerings include a philosophical summer course in the Olympic Mountains in which they ponder the role of wilderness in the Anthropocene, and among other things, spend time informally monitoring populations of Olympic Mountain endemic plants. Interested folks can learn more at his website: https://timbillo.wordpress.com/




Updated: August 14, 2017
Copyright 2000-2017 Washington Native Plant Society. All rights reserved.

Home | Sign in