butterfly   PAC videos:

 

Click here to watch a 15-minute video about PAC & Conservation, The Rhythm of Life

Click here to watch a 23-minute video about PAC, Conservation, & our beautiful Foothills, The Best Place to Be

Click here to watch a 10-minute video about the importance of Saving Our Horse Country

Click here to watch a 6-minute video about Kids & Conservation

June 8 – naturalist and educator, Carlton Burke, presented, “Owls – Masters of the Night,” to 98 guests as part of the Landrum Library’s “Summer Reading Program.”

Owls are mysterious birds of prey which are seldom seen due to their nocturnal lifestyle and secretive habits. This program introduces viewers to the fascinating lives of these unusual birds and their unique adaptations for life in their nighttime world. The program features three species of live owls as guests!

Carlton Burke operates an educational service called “Carolina Mountain Naturalists” which specializes in presenting live animal and nature programs and displays for area schools, summer camps, and many other organizations. He is also a state and federally licensed wildlife rehabilitator and he can be heard each Saturday morning co-hosting NATURE NEWS, a local, hour-long radio program, featuring news from the natural world around the western NC region.

Nature News can be heard following this link to WTZQ.

If you missed the presentation, you can watch it by clicking the link.

DSC_0503_1Carlton Burke and a Great Horned Owl

This program was made possible thanks to a Free Community Events grant from the Polk County Community Foundation.

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May 27 – 62 participants joined PAC and Walunt Creek Preserve at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center to listen to a presentation by Tradd Cotter, mycologist and founder of Mushroom Mountain present, “Amazing Fungi – The Dark Matter that Bounds all Life.”

It was a fascinating lecture on native plants and their fungal partners. In order to sustain life on this planet, a complex matrix of organisms has evolved to orchestrate the balance. Plants and fungi have merged and continue to unveil the benefits of collaborating with nature. We have a lot to learn from these relationships, and understanding the respect they have for each other can teach us more than just soil biology. Our native plant communities are communicating through their own internet, reaching out to other organisms to help repair the ecosystems that perpetuate life on this planet.

If you missed the presentation, you can watch it by clicking here.

Click here for the Q & A portion that followed the presentation.


May 18 – Angela Wilhelm, of the Asheville Citizen-Times, interviewed PAC’s Pam Torlina about the upcoming consolidation/merger with the Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy and the Little White Oak Mountain project that our two land trusts have partnered to protect.

Click here to watch a video of the interview.


May 9 – award-winning outdoor writer and interpretive naturalist, Dennis Chastain presented, “Appalachian Sampler,” at at the Landrum Library to a group of 34.

Dennis’s  presentation featured natural and cultural history characteristic of the Blue Ridge segment of the ancient Appalachian Mountains.  Growing up at the base of Table Rock in Pickens County, SC, he has spent his whole life traversing the mountains.  During his presentation, he talked about rare animal encounters, ancient Indian petroglyphs, rock shelters, and how to identify animal tracks, scats and sign in our Carolina mountain region.

DSC_0492_1Dennis’s chance encounter with a Turkey Vulture chick while traversing the mountains and exploring a rock shelter.

This program was made possible by a Free Community Events Grant from the Polk County Community Foundation.

community-matters-pccf-seal_transparentClick here to watch a video of his entertaining and informative presentation.


April 29 – Simon Thompson, owner of Ventures Birding Tours, presented “Confessions of a Birding Tour Leader” to a group of 37 at Walnut Creek Preserve’s Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center. 

simonClick here to watch a video of his presentation!


April 11 – Dr. Tim Spira presented, “Favorite Spring Wildflowers in the Blue Ridge Mountains,” for a group of 26 at the Landrum Library!

 

photoBotanist Tim Spira showed beautiful photographs of common and conspicuous, as well as rare and unusual, spring wildflowers including trilliums, trout lily, wild ginger, mayapple, bearcorn, Jack-in-the-pulpit, pink lady’s slipper, cucumber root, Oconee bells, and many others. In addition, to helping identify spring wildflowers, he discussed fascinating features about their ecology and natural history, which enhances your understanding and appreciation of spring wildflowers in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

 

Tim is an avid hiker, wildflower enthusiast, and emeritus professor of botany at Clemson University.  He is the author of Wildflowers and Plant Communities of the Southern Appalachian Mountains and Piedmont: A Naturalist’s Guide to the Carolinas, Virginia, Tennessee, and Georgia (University of North Carolina Press, 2011) and Waterfalls and Wildflowers in the Southern Appalachians: Thirty Great Hikes (University of North Carolina Press, 2015).

 

This program was made possible by a Free Community Events Grant from the Polk County Community Foundation.
community-matters-pccf-seal_transparentClick here to watch a video of his presentation.

March 14 – Dr. Gillian Newberry presented “Endangered Plants of the Piedmont” to 29 participants at the Landrum Library.
The talk included tips for the identification of some of the rarest plants in the Piedmont, why they are rare, and why we should care.  Gillian included some notes on her research on preserving these endangered species.  She highlighted Oconee Bells (Shortia galacifolia), Dwarf-flowered Heartleaf (Hexastylis naniflora), insectiverous plants (such as sundews (Drosera spp.) and pitcher plants (Sarracenia spp.)), Bunched Arrowhead (Sagittaria fasciculate), American Chestnut (Castanea dentata), and Walking Fern (Asplenium rhizophyllum).
Gillian NewberryThis program was made possible by a Free Community Events Grant from the Polk County Community Foundation.
community-matters-pccf-seal_transparentClick here to watch a video of her presentation.

On February 18, 2017 – Christian Hunt, Southeast Program Associate for Defenders of Wildlife, presented, “North Carolina’s Red Wolves: An Imperiled Future” to a group of 52!

The Red Wolf (Canis rufus) is a smaller and a more slender cousin of the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus).  It is gray-black, with a reddish cast that gives it the color for which it is named.  Historically, Red Wolves ranged throughout the southeastern U.S., from Pennsylvania to Florida, and as far west as Texas.  Almost hunted to the brink of extinction, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rounded up fewer than 20 Red Wolves to be bred in captivity in 1980.  As of 2007, approximately 207 captive Red Wolves reside at 38 captive breeding facilities across the United States; however, fewer than 45 Red Wolves currently live in the wild.  Today, wild populations roam more than 1.7 million acres throughout northeastern North Carolina.  Christian discussed the history, biology, threats, political atmosphere, and benefits that the Red Wolf brings to our ecosystem.

4237167628_5fc4c49713Click here to watch a video of his presentation.

Click here to read an article about the Red Wolf from the Laurel of Asheville.


On January 21, 2017 – Ben Mullinax presented, “Seeing with New Eyes,” a program on macro-photography to a group of 34 at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve!

seeing-with-new-eyesClick here to watch a video of his presentation.


On November 5, 2016, Denise Furr, an Adjunct Curator of Malacology (Mollusks) at the Schiele Museum of Natural History in Gastonia, NC, presented, “The Secret Lives of Snails,” to a group of 16 at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

denise-furrClick here to watch a video of her presentation


On August 6, 2016, Dr. Bill Stringer, a retired professor of crop science at Clemson University, presented, “Native Grasses in the Carolina Foothills,” to a group of nearly 30 people at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

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Click here to watch a video of his presentation!


February 20, 2016, naturalist, Tim Lee, presented “Trillium of the Carolinas” to 25 participants at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

Tim presented on the natural history of trillium, a plant of interest not only because of their delicate beauty and their brief bloom time but also because of their growth patterns, pollination and seed dispersal.   Plants that  may take as long as seven years or longer to develop from seed to blossom and can then bloom for more than 75 years!  The natural history and taxonomy of the trillium was discussed as well tips for identification of trillium found in the Carolinas.

      group and Tim

Click here to watch a video of the presentation.


On January 30, 2016, Mary Holcombe of Southern Heritage Nursery (a native plant nursery in Blue Ridge, SC) presented, “Native Plants in the Landscape: For Unparalleled Beauty and Ease of Care” at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve at 10:30 a.m.

The southeast boasts a staggering array of beautiful flowering plants, most of which are surprisingly easy to cultivate.  Participants learned about a wide variety of ornamental native perennials, shrubs, and trees, and how to incorporate them into your own landscape.

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Click here to download a copy of “Native Plants in the Landscape – Beautiful and Easy to Grow”

If you missed the presentation, you can watch it by clicking on this link.


On November 21, 2015, Bill Stringer, Ph. D presented “The role of native plants in personal and public landscapes” to an audience of 30 at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

The program defined what a “native plant” is and why they are vital to our landscapes.  During the program, Dr. Stringer discussed these topics in the context of the role of all landscapes in maintaining and enhancing pollinator, songbird, and other wildlife populations.

Dr. Bill Stringer is a retired professor of crop science at Clemson University.  He has served the SC Native Plant Society as president, newsletter editor, and field trip leader.  He also occasionally serves as a consultant on native landscape issues.

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Bob and Babs Strickland, of Walnut Creek Preserve, with presenter, Bill Stringer

Click here to watch a video of his presentation.


 

On Saturday, October 31st, Tim Spira, a recently retired professor  of Biological Sciences at Clemson University and author of “Wildflowers and Plant Communities of the Southern Appalachian Mountains and Piedmont” (2011) and his new book “Waterfalls and Wildflowers in the Southern Appalachians-thirty great hikes” (2015), will present, “The Magic of Waterfalls and Wildflowers in the Southern Appalachian Mountains.”

Waterfalls are natural magnets for hikers, photographers, nature enthusiasts, and casual visitors to the mountains.  Some waterfalls enchant us with their softness as water gently glides over bedrock; others impress us with the height of their falling water; still others awe us with their power.  The constantly falling water, sparkling light, and swirling spray is exhilarating, soothing, and inspiring.  For whatever reason, waterfalls make us feel good.  Exploring wildflowers (and other natural features) along the trail to the waterfall adds another layer of fun.  In this presentation, Mr. Spira will introduce waterfalls and wildflowers in the southern Appalachians, including why people are so enchanted by them.

P1120329Tim Spira at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve

Click here to watch a video of the presentation


 

On September 26, about 20 people attended the free presentation on “Unusual Native Plants of the Pacolet Region to Know and Grow” presented by Dr. Larry Mellichamp at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

The Carolinas in general – and the Pacolet Region in specific – are rich in native plant species that are well known to naturalists, native plant enthusiasts, and to gardeners. However, there are unusual species lurking in the woods that are more elusive and worth seeking out. The Pacolet region of the Carolinas has a very high diversity of wildflowers and woody plants due to its moderate climate and geologic location near the Hickory Nut Gorge and the Blue Ridge Escarpment. Dr. Mellichamp introduced some of the common and less common and intriguing plants of the region.

Dr. Mellichamp is a recently retired Professor of Botany and Horticulture at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where he taught for over 39 years. He was also director of the University’s Botanical Gardens which consists of 10 acres of outdoor gardens including many native plants. The new Mellichamp Natives Terrace Garden demonstrates the use of natives directly for the homeowner. Dr. Mellichamp is an expert on native wildflowers, trees, and shrubs and he also studies carnivorous plants, especially Sarracenia pitcher plants. He did much of his early research locally, along Pearson’s Falls Road.

He has written many technical and popular articles on plants and gardening, and has co-authored five books: including “The Winter Garden” (1997); “Bizarre Botanicals” with Paula Gross (2010); and most recently, “Native Plants of the Southeast (and their garden uses)” (2014). He has traveled extensively in the United States and has made trips to see unusual plants in Costa Rica, South Africa, Borneo, China, Australia, and most recently, Madagascar.

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Click here to see Dr. Mellichamp’s list of “The BEST Southeastern Native Plants for your Garden”

Click here to watch a video of the presentation


On August 29th – North Carolina Wildlife Resource Officer, Toby Jenkins, presented “Predator/prey Relationships in Western North Carolina” to about 35 attendees at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

Toby Jenkins

Click here to watch a video of his presentation


 

On Saturday, July 11, Charlotte Caplan presented “The Top 50 Mushrooms of Western North Carolina” to a group of over 40 participants at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

The presentation offered a look at some common mushrooms in our area and tips on recognizing them. The mushrooms presented were those species that one can expect to see on any woodland hike in the summer and all (unless it is too dry for mushrooms to appear).

After the program participants were invited to take a stroll on the Walnut Creek Preserve property to see what fungi could be found!

Charlotte Caplan has been collecting, studying, identifying, and eating fungi for 40 years, in both Europe and North America. She started learning about mushrooms in Britain in 1975, and she was mainly self-taught because the British have no tradition of collecting wild mushrooms and there are very few clubs available. Upon moving to the USA, to Savannah, GA, in 1986 there still seemed to be no one else interested in fungi. But then, after moving to Asheville in 1998, it was like moving to the mushroom capital of the world! There were not only huge varieties of fungi to be found, but also an active mushroom club!

Ms. Caplan is the past president of the Asheville Mushroom Club and she has presented to many mushroom clubs, led numerous field trips, and is an instructor for the NC Arboretum’s Blue Ridge Naturalist certification program.

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PAC Executive Director, Mary Walter, introduces presenter, Charlotte Caplan. (Photo by Ford Smith)

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Charlotte Caplan (front and center) leads the group of attendees for a mushroom foray on the Walnut Creek Preserve grounds. (Photo by Ford Smith)

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Hesler’s Entoloma (Entoloma velutinum) (Photo by Ford Smith)

Click here to watch the video of her presentation.


 

On June 27th, biologist, Bill Boone spoke about “Bears of the World with Emphasis on Their Reproduction” to about 40 participants.  Bill presented a general talk about the eight species of bears in the world; the five colors of black bears; what bears eat; where bears live; and safety as it pertains to living in black bear country. He also discussed his families’ 10-year involvement with the reproduction of black bears.

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Click here to see a video of this presentation.

On May 16, 2015, Don Surrette presented “The American Chestnut Restoration Project” at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

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Click here to watch a video of the presentation.


On April 25, 2015, Zora Rhodes, formerly a Conservation Education Specialist for the NC Wildlife Resources Commission, presented on “The Re-introduction of the Peregrine Falcon to Western North Carolina” to about 35 participants!  After the program attendees were invited to visit the Town of Chimney Rock to view the Peregrine Falcon nest on the cliffs of Chimney Rock.

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Click here to watch a video of her presentation


On April 21, 2015, about 55 people attended PAC’s Annual Meeting at the Tryon Youth Center!  Attendees were treated to a presentation by guest speaker, Jay Leutze, award-winning conservationist and author of “Stand up that Mountain.”

Leutze’s book is a true story about fighting the good fight to preserve the Appalachian Trail and its wonderful vistas in the face of a corrupt process to exploit the natural resources of the North Carolina mountains.

The book has been a huge success and has made Jay quite the celebrity in conservation circles around the country.

Jay has continued to expand his efforts as an award-winning conservationist, particularly with regard to preserving tracts of natural beauty and wildlife habitat in Western North Carolina.

Click here to see a video of Jay Leutze’s presentation

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About 60 people attended the American Chestnut Memorial Planting in honor of Mara Smith at Harmon Field on Saturday, February 7th!

Four, hopefully blight resistant, American Chestnut trees have been reintroduced into the landscape, both at Harmon Field and at the PAC protected Norman Wilder Forest (eight trees in total).

It was a beautiful day! Thank you to Ford Smith and his family, the American Chestnut Foundation, and the Town of Tryon and Harmon Field for helping to make this happen!

by Bob Bruce_10

Tom Saielli of the American Chestnut Foundation planting the first American Chestnut tree at Harmon Field.

Click here to hear Tom Saielli, Southern Regional Science Coordinator for the American Chestnut Foundation, summarizes the purpose and importance of reintroduction efforts by the Foundation and the public.

Click here to watch part 1 of the memorial planting

Click here to watch part 2 of the memorial planting


On November 8th, Emmy-award winning naturalist, Patrick McMillan, PhD, presented “Personal Space, the importance of private land and personal decisions in our world,” to about 50-participants at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.
In his presentation, Patrick McMillan spoke about the importance and impact that choices and private land management decisions/conservation efforts have had over the course of our history.

Patrick McMillan has worked as a professional naturalist, biologist and educator for over 20 years. His range of experience has concentrated on botany (plant science) though he is also well-respected through his work in ichthyology, herpetology, and mammalogy. Patrick is the Director of the SC Botanical Garden, host of ETV’s “Expeditions with Patrick McMillan,” the Director of the Bob Campbell Geology Museum, and professor at Clemson University’s School of Agricultural, Forest, and Environmental Sciences.

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This program was made possible, in part, by a grant from Delores Lastinger.

Click here to view part 1 of this presentation

Click here to view part 2 of this presentation

Click here to view part 3 of this presentation


On October 11, 2014, Carlton Burke of the Carolina Mountain Naturalists presented, “Owls – Masters of the Night” to about 85 adults and children at a free program hosted by the Pacolet Area Conservancy (PAC) and Walnut Creek Preserve!

The group learned about the owls native to the Southeast, the special adaptations that owls have evolved, and much more! Carlton even brought two LIVE owls for the group to see, a Barred Owl (Strix varia) and a Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus)!

This program is made possible, in part, by a grant from Delores Lastinger. Her grant also allowed PAC to purchase equipment to record this program!

Carlton and Barred owl

Carlton Burke with a Barred Owl (left) and Great Horned Owl (right)

Click here to see part 1 of Carlton’s program

Click here to see part 2 of Carlton’s program

Click here to see part 3 of Carlton’s program


On September 27th, Lisa Wagner of the South Carolina Botanical Garden presented a program on “Creating a Native Woodland Garden” at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve (WCP) to a group of 27 people!

Lisa described the process of creating a woodland garden, how to choose the appropriate species for your site, and review some of their characteristics and growth habits. The plants that grow in our native forest communities provide a wonderful plant palette for creating diverse and beautiful woodland gardens using Eastern North American natives. Spring wildflowers such as bloodroot, foamflower, black cohosh, woodland phlox, and Solomon’s seal are native woodland garden favorites, while characteristic native shrubs and trees in the mid- and upper canopy creates a beautiful supporting framework.Lisa Wagner served as Director of Education at the South Carolina Botanical Garden, Clemson University for over 20 years.  A plant ecologist by background (Ph.D. in Botany, UC Berkeley), she’s also a naturalist, writer, blogger, and educator.  She is a frequent host on the gardening call-in shows on YourDay, a production of Clemson Video Productions broadcast on SC-ETV radio.  She does landscape consultations to benefit programs at non-profits in the Carolinas, especially gardens!  Her award-winning blog Natural Gardening reflects her gardening and nature experiences. She and her husband, Tim Spira, divide their time between Asheville, NC and Clemson, SC, where they’ve restored natural habitat, planted pollinator-friendly gardens, and converted lawns to natives.
Click here to see a video of her presentation, part 1
Click here to see part 2 of her presentation
Click here to see part 3 of her presentation
Check out Lisa’s blog at, http://www.naturalgardening.blogspot.com/.

On August 23, 2014, Tim Lee, Naturalist and Interpreter for South Carolina Parks and Recreation’s Mountain Bridge Wilderness Area, presented, “Wildlife and Wildflowers,” a program on plant and animal interactions, at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.  About 30 participants attended the free presentation.

Plants and animals interact in many fascinating and complex ways that play an important role in the survival of both plant and animal.  Tim discussed topics such as why hummingbirds are attracted to red flowers, why some plants appear to never be visited by animals, and why or how a plant would eat an animal.

Click here to see part 1 of Tim’s presentation

Click here to see part 2 of Tim’s presentation

Click here to see part 3 of Tim’s presentation (Q & A)


On July 12th, botanist Gillian Newberry, PhD. and creator of the herbarium at Walnut Creek Preserve, presented “Flora of Walnut Creek Preserve” to about 25 attendees at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve!

Dr. Newberry talked about the flora of Walnut Creek Preserve, her adventures collecting specimens on the property, and her role in the creation of the herbarium housed at the Nature Center.

This program was made possible, in part, by a grant from the Polk County Community Foundation.

Click here to watch part one of her presentation

Click here to watch part two of her presentation

Click here to watch part three of her presentation


On Friday, July 11, Tommy Lytle lead a Kids and Parents Environmental Education program to a few participants at the PAC protected Weaverbarton Shuford Memorial Wildlife Sanctuary.  Participants enjoyed an interpretive nature walk on the property followed by a video-microscope show highlighting the aquatic plants and invertebrates living in Weaverbarton Branch!


On Friday, June 20th, Tommy Lytle held the first of an exciting new series of Nature Walks and Video-Microscope Shows for school kids and their parents this summer. This Kids and Parents Environmental Education Program, held at Pearson’s Falls, included an easy-to-moderate hike with commentary by Tommy Lytle, a local botanist and naturalist working with PAC through a grant from Pacolet Milliken Enterprises, Inc., of Spartanburg. After about an hour of walking with the group, Tommy used a video-microscope to show everyone some of the much smaller plants and animals which live in the same area.

Click here to see a 15 minute, unedited Video-microscopy from the water plants and animals of Colt Creek at Pearson’s Falls near Saluda, NC.

Pearson falls-4

Pictured above, from the left, Tommy Lytle, Bob Tobey, Melanie Huizor, Alan Huizor, Sierra Tucker, Jackie Burke and Phoebe Burke. Photograph by Matthew Lytle.


On Saturday, May 10th, Tim Spira, a professor of Biological Sciences at Clemson University and author of Wildflowers and Plant Communities of the Southern Appalachian Mountains and Piedmont presented “Wildflower Ecology: A Step Beyond Identification” at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

While wildflower identification is fun, it’s really just the beginning rather than the end of the journey. Participants learned how to interpret common features of native wildflowers and thereby enhance their understanding and appreciation of nature.

For example, have you ever wondered why flowers are so incredibly variable in size, color, shape, and fragrance? Why fruits change color as they age? Or, why leaves differ in size, shape, texture, and color? Tim addressed these questions and more as he discussed some of the many interesting adaptations of our native plants.  He also had copies of his books available for purchase.

SpiraPresenter, Tim Spira at Station Cove Falls in Sumpter National Forest (Photo by Lisa Wagner)

Click here to watch a video of the presentation


On Saturday, April 5th, the Pacolet Area Conservancy (PAC) and Walnut Creek Preserve (WCP) held a free program about “the Cherokee Path” presented by Dennis Chastain of SC Wildlife magazine. The program was held at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve on Saturday, April 5, at 10:30 a.m.

Dennis Chastain discussed the Cherokee Path and what is known about old Native American paths and roads in the Upstate. He also talked about William Moultrie, one of the original surveyors in this area.

Dennis Chastain is an award-winning outdoor writer, interpretive naturalist and modern-day explorer. He has been writing feature articles for South Carolina Wildlife magazine and other outdoor publications for more than twenty years.

This program is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Polk County Community Foundation, and thank you to Delores Lastinger for the grant that allowed PAC to purchase equipment to record this program!

Dennis Chastain photoDennis Chastain filming with ETV with Table Rock in the distance.

Click here to view the first 30 minutes of the presentation

Click here for part 2 of the presentation

Click here for part 3, the final words of the presentation


On February 22nd, Janie Marlow, founder of namethatplant.net, a website dedicated to the native (and naturalized) plants of the Carolinas and Georgia, presented “Name That Plant! (dot net)” at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

The web resource www.NameThatPlant.net is an approachable storehouse of information about native and naturalized plants of the Carolinas and Georgia, inspired by Jacques-Yves Cousteau’s assertion: “People only protect what they love, but they can only love what they know.”

More than a typical “wildflower site” but not intimidating like many university-backed botanical sites seem to be, NameThatPlant.net is a plant identification tool with a local focus that is both technically accurate and user-friendly (even fun!). Here you can see pictures of plants in different seasons of the year, hear their Latin names pronounced, learn their natural habitats, discover interesting places to visit, and look up botanical terms. You can search for a plant using either its common or scientific name or its family, or even by describing it. The site includes articles of interest, recommended books, and links to much more.

For those of us who are not botanists, NameThatPlant.net is like a window, a bridge, to the body of knowledge that’s there but we don’t know how to access, inviting us to enter. Discovering the identity of just one wild plant means that the green blur is now made up of individuals, each with a name. One can allow oneself to become interested.

There’s more in the site than is immediately obvious, and the presentation will include a short tour of its features and examples of ways some viewers have put it to use — such as noticing and reporting plants that were previously unknown in their region, including invasives that are on the move.

Click here to view the first 30 minutes of Janie Marlow’s presentation.

Click here to view the second half of Janie Marlow’s presentation.

JanieMarlow_0047dJanie Marlow


On January 25th, Ron Lance, a Biologist and Land Manager with the North American Land Trust presented “Winter Tree and Shrub Identification” to an audience of nearly 40 people!

Participants learned how leafless twigs can be used to identify deciduous woody plants in winter. Participants received detailed introduction to the characters and terminology used to describe twigs and bark, as well as practiced using a dichotomous key with samples of twigs that were provided.  The indoor portion of this seminar was followed by a walk around the grounds at Walnut Creek Preserve where those that participated got to practice tree identification in the field.

Click here to watch Ron’s presentation on YouTube (this is a first effort recording programs with new equipment…the presentation is not complete, sorry.  We’ll be working out the “kinks” for future programs).


On October 26, Kerry Wright, a geology major in his senior year at UNCA, presented, “A Geologic History of the Blue Ridge Mountains,” at the Anne Elizabeth Suratt Nature Center at Walnut Creek Preserve.

Click here to watch Kerry’s presentation on YouTube (this is a first effort recording programs and the quality is not great; we’ll be working on getting better quality recordings for future programs).


On June 18th, 2013, Ashlea Surles of WLOS news came to Tryon to cover PAC’s use of goats to eradicate Kudzu from a 2-acre lot in Tryon.

WLOS goats    Click here to see the news coverage!

*Slight correction to the story, we apologize for any confusion, the cost of the project is not $12,000 a month…it’s actually approximately $3,000 per year; $9,000 for the 3-year project.  This includes the transport of the goats, to and from the site, twice a year, erection and removal of the fence, and Wells Farm cares for the animal (including vetting) and assumes responsibility if anything unforeseen should happen to the animals.


On June 12, 2013, Emily Pace of channel 7 news came to Tryon to cover a story about PAC’s use of goats to combat Kudzu (and other non-native and invasive species) at a 2-acre lot in Tryon, owned by the Town of Tryon.  The property is protected by a conservation easement with PAC but has become over taken by Kudzu, etc.

The Pacolet Area Conservancy, in partnership with the Town of Tryon and the North Carolina Cooperative Extension, has received a grant from the Polk County Community Foundation through their Kudzu Eradication Initiative.  This grant will be used to fund the use of goats to eradicate Kudzu from the 2-acre Town of Tryon lot.  These goats will be working on the site twice a year, for three consecutive years.

Thanks also to TJ’s restaurant for use of an outlet for the fence, to the Sign Shop for quick work on the sign, to John Vining of the NC Cooperative Extension for Polk Co., to Ron and Cheryl Searcy of Wells Farms, the Town of Tryon, Re/Max for the brochure holder, and the Polk County Community Foundation (who funded this project through a Kudzu Eradication Initiative grant).

channel 7 goats    Click here to see the news coverage!


On January 20th, 2012, Valerie True, Coalition Coordinator of Blue Ridge Forever (of which PAC is a partner), interviewed PAC Land Protection Specialist, Pam Torlina, for a social media campaign for Land for Tomorrow! Land for Tomorrow is a non-profit with a partnership of concerned citizens, businesses, interest groups and local governments urging the General Assembly to fully fund North Carolina’s four conservation trust funds. This campaign includes short videos of interviews with experts on various topics. The January theme was water quality. Torlina was asked a series of questions, such as:

1. Can you describe, in broad terms, the ecological impact of a clean and protected water source such as the North Pacolet River?

2. How does having a clean and intact fresh water ecosystem impact people in the community?

3. How do you educate and work in your local community to protect your water resources? Name specific examples of partnerships.

4. Can you point to any PAC projects that you are most proud of, ideally one with a water quality impact?

A portion of the interview was posted on the Land for Tomorrow Facebook page on Feb. 2, 2012!

 

PAC’s Pam Torlina is interviewed for Land For Tomorrow!  Check out the links below to view portions of the interview.

Youtube-Pam


Also, watch a nice video linked to PAC showcasing a water ecology program that PAC did for Harmon Field Summer Camp in 2009:

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