The Delaware Native Plant Society and the Garden Keepers at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge are presenting a free symposium, “Native Trees for Delaware Gardens,” in the Visitors Center Auditorium at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge this Saturday, Sept. 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.


The Delaware Native Plant Society and the Garden Keepers at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge are presenting a free symposium, “Native Trees for Delaware Gardens,” in the Visitors Center Auditorium at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge this Saturday, Sept. 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The wildlife refuge is located about five miles southeast of Smyrna at 2591 Whitehall Neck Road, off of Rt. 9.

While the event free and open to the public, registration is required and space is limited. To register, contact Quentin Schlieder by phone at (302) 653-6449 or by e-mail at qcsjr@comcast.net.

A free complimentary breakfast and lunch are included. A specialty nursery will have native plants available for purchase.

Following the symposium, an optional tour focusing on the identification of native trees is available.

Benefits of native trees

In recent years, many housing projects have been developed in former farm fields devoid of trees. This symposium will introduce registrants to the rich palette of trees native to Delaware which will enrich not only a home landscape but also the quality of life in the community. Actually, native trees make beautiful, functional, and environmentally smart additions to any type of garden, since native plants are a critical element in the region’s web of life. By selecting the right native plants, buying healthy ones, and planting them properly, homeowners help to preserve the native plants that are disappearing from our natural areas as well as create small oases for the wildlife in Delaware’s urban areas. When planted in the proper situation, native plants require minimal maintenance and enhance the market value of the home.

Guest speakers: Bill McAvoy and Lenny Wilson

Noted botanist Bill McAvoy will present a program on native Delaware trees in their native habitats. McAvoy is the botanist with the Delaware Natural Heritage Program where he takes primary responsibility for planning, coordinating, and conducting inventories for rare plant species in Delaware. He specializes in coastal plain flora. He has served both as vice president and president of the Delaware Native Plant Society and has participated in the four previous symposia on ferns, hardy native orchids, native rhododendrons, and lilies and native members of the aster family.

The second speaker is Lenny Wilson who will profile great native trees which adapt well to the home landscape in Delaware. Wilson joined the staff at the Delaware Center for Horticulture, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life in Delaware’s diverse communities through horticulture in 1999 and is currently the assistant director of horticulture and facilities. In that role, Wilson’s responsibilities include the design, consultation, and development of the center’s public landscape plantings in traffic medians, parks and roadsides and the management of the center’s gardens. Wilson lives in north Wilmington where he enjoys a naturalized landscape around his home featuring a storm water swale and gravel garden.

About the Native Plant Society

The Delaware Native Plant Society has a statewide membership and was organized in 1998 and encourages the use of and works to preserve, conserve, restore, and propagate native plants and native plant communities in Delaware.

The society provides information to government officials, business people, educators, and the public on the protection, management, and restoration of native plant ecosystems through on-going distribution of information that includes periodic publications, symposia and conferences, workshops and field trips, actual hand’s-on projects.

All members of the Delaware Native Plant Society are entitled to attend Society meetings, field trips, and other special events. In addition, each member will receive the quarterly newsletter “The Turk’s Cap.”
For more information about the society, visit its website at www.delawarenativeplants.org.