Tag: plants

  1. Volunteer Preserves Smokies’ Plant Diversity

    Volunteer Preserves Smokies’ Plant Diversity by Aaron Searcy, Publications Associate With the eye of an artist and the steady hand of a lab technician, Janie Bitner carefully preserves some of the rarest and most delicate plants found in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Taken together, the many species she helps enter into the park’s collections build a convincing case Read more...
  2. The Smokies in Your Backyard: Crested Dwarf Iris, Foam Flower, and Columbine

    The Smokies in Your Backyard: Crested Dwarf Iris, Foam Flower, and Columbine By Steve Kemp & Janet Rock  It’s impossible not to get excited about wildflowers at this time of year. Out of the 1,600 species of flowering plants that can found in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, here are some that should thrive around your home if you reside in the Southeast, central Appalachians, and parts of the Read more...
  3. The Smokies in Your Backyard: Flowering Dogwood

    The Smokies in Your Backyard: Flowering Dogwood By Steve Kemp and Janet Rock Photo by GSMA Although it is illegal to dig up plants in Great Smoky Mountains National Park and transplant them in your yard (all plants, animals, and even rocks are protected in the park), you can purchase native plants at reputable nurseries and propagate a bit of the Smokies around your home. Our new Smokies Read more...
  4. Permanent Camp: Evergreen Strategies

    Permanent Camp: Evergreen Strategies By George Ellison with illustration by Elizabeth Ellison Winter simplifies, scaling life down to the bare essentials. Solitude is surer then. The muted browns and grays of the soil and stones display a somber intensity. There are no curtains of leaves to obstruct vision. And winter outings provide an opportunity to observe evergreen plants more Read more...
  5. Permanent Camp: Grass-of-Parnassus

    Permanent Camp: Grass-of-Parnassus by George Ellison with illustration by Elizabeth Ellison  “From a distance the white flowers are attractive but not extraordinary; when observed closely, though, the delicate tracery of the green veins on the waxy white petals is astonishing.” ~Alan S. Weakley, “Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States& Read more...
  6. Permanent Camp: Skunk Goldenrod

    Permanent Camp: Skunk Goldenrod By George Ellison with illustration by Elizabeth Ellison  Have you ever been enjoying a walk along a mountain trail when you suddenly encountered a musky unpleasant smell? I've learned to consider five likely sources: bear scat, wild boar, carrion vine, galax, or goldenrod. Goldenrod? Yes, if you’re walking in the higher elevations Read more...
  7. Permanent Camp - Southern Harebell

    Permanent Camp - Southern Harebell By George Ellison with illustration by Elizabeth Ellison Plants and animals are often at war with one another. But they also find avenues that allow them to practice cooperative behavior. No relationship in the natural world demonstrates this more clearly than the one forged millions of years ago between flowering plants and their pollinators Read more...
  8. Permanent Camp: Rugel's Ragwort

    Permanent Camp: Rugel's Ragwort Story by George Ellison with image by Elizabeth Ellison This is the story of Rugel's ragwort (Rugelia nudicaulis)—one of the most rare and interesting plants in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park—and its eccentric namesake, the German-born plant collector Ferdinand Ignatius Xavier Rugel. In 1840, Rugel (1806-1879) came to the Read more...
  9. Permanent Camp: Bracken

    Permanent Camp: Bracken By George Ellison, lllustration by Elizabeth Ellison  “Here and elsewhere, bracken is such an aggressive plant that one wonders why it has not taken over the world.”~ R. C. Moran, A Natural History of Ferns  I am a fern aficionado, not a fern authority. Nevertheless, ferns are my favorite plants. And bracken is one of my Read more...

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