OfficersDesert Harvest

President: George Miller, 352-9019, goxfordm1844 at

Vice President: Tom Stewart, 881-6296, tstewart at

Program Chair: Jim McGrath, 286-8745, sedges at

Secretary: Nancy Hudson, 896-0971, hudsonia1 at

Treasurer: Gary Runyan, 205-9953, npsnm.gjrshadow at

Chapter Representative: Bettie Hines, 298-8408, hines.bettie at

Field Trip Coordinator: Dana Price, 872-2646, dana_price at

Membership: Ann-Marie Yaroslaski, 220-8158, marannyar at

Newsletter Editor: Vacant. We welcome any member with journalistic/editing/desktop publishing interests to try on this rewarding volunteer position. Contact George or Tom.

Community Outreach: Lisa Driscoll, 266-6404, zaradric at

Educational Outreach: Pam McBride, 343-9472, ebotpam at

Core Group

Books: Carolyn Dodson, 268-7889, cdodson at

Book Marketer: Silda Mason, 505-344-4297, sirqmason at

Garden Center Landscaper: Jana Hazelbaker, hazelbakerj at

Hospitality: Lisa Driscoll, 266-6404, zaradric at

Communications: Gary Hoe, 505 296-3654, hoebeau at

Invasive Weeds Representative: Don Heinz, 565-1441, dhhbotany at

Member Benefits: Vacant

Publicity: Melissa Ewer, melissitah at

Refreshments Coordinator: Penny Hoe, hoebeau at

Habitat Gardening Facilitator: Virginia Burris, 255-6772, vburris1 at

Albuquerque Chapter Annual Report

2013 Chapter Report (PDF)

2012 Chapter Report (PDF)

2011 Chapter Report (PDF)

2009 Chapter Report (PDF)

2008 Chapter Report (PDF)

Scheduled Events for 2014

All meetings are first Wednesdays at 7 pm in the multi-purpose room of the Museum of Natural History, 1801 Mountain Road NW. Contacts: Jim McGrath (programs): sedges at, 505-286-8745 or Dana Price (field trips and field forums): dana_price at, 505-872-2646.

April 2 Meeting.  “Animal facilitation of New Mexico grassland recovery after fire” presented by Dr. Nancy Nicholai.

Dr. Nancy Nicolai, Adjunct Assistant Research Professor at UNM, tells us how our grassland plants are resilient to prairie wildfires.   Many are adapted to soil changes that occur after fire has swept through, yet harvester ants and banner-tailed kangaroo rats also improve conditions at their nests.  Thus, ants amplify various plants’ recovery after fire, while kangaroo rats’ greatest impact is during unburned times.  These animals may be small, but they may improve our grasslands and their ability to cope with fire.

Dr. Nicolai obtained her Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in Range Ecology.  She has worked in California, Israel, Nebraska, Santo Domingo Pueblo, and Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge conducting applied research on plant and animal communities.  She is particularly interested in the plant-animal interactions’ facilitation of arid communities. She also conducts research on endangered animals and their habitats.  She has written twenty papers and given talks on animals and plants at national and international meetings.  She is also a volunteer for Hawks Aloft in Albuquerque and teaches biology for teachers at the University of New Mexico.

April 26 Saturday Field Trip.  Gary Runyan, Leader:  Pine Flats to see Pasque flowers. Half Day field trip. Meet at “A” at 8:30 a.m.

May 7th Meeting. “Phytoactives: the Language of Plants.” Dr. Ivette Guzman, plant biochemistry professor at Northern New Mexico College, has a life-long passion for plants and their healing, medicinal, and chemical properties. Dr. Guzman’s current interest is in integrating all aspects of plant biochemistry to allow for better understanding of plant ecophysiology, the study of plant biochemistry and metabolism of specialized metabolites as they are affected by interactions with the environment.

May 31 Saturday Field Trip. (Date may change slightly depending on weather.) “Sandia Crest: Orchids and Ivey’s Bladderpod.” George Miller (352-9019, cell 554-4950), Leader. Easy to moderate hike on trails around Sandia Crest Visitor Center for Calypso and Coral Root orchids, Ivey’s Bladderpod, Cliff Primrose, King’s Crown Stonecrop, and other unusual mountain plants. In past years, more than 25 species have been in bloom. Meeting Place “A” at 8:30 a.m. Bring lunch.

Late May Field Trip. The Grama Grass cactus and San Ysidro Peak. Jim McGrath, Leader. We will examine a grama grass population and hike the trail to San Ysidro Peak. All day hike near San Ysidro, NM – about 40 miles from Albuquerque. Details TBA.

June 4th Meeting.  “The New Mexico ‘Plants for Pollinators’ Project”. Dr. Tess Grasswitz, Urban/Small Farm Entomologist with New Mexico State University, tells how since 2010 New Mexico State University and the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) have been collaborating on testing hundreds of mostly native plant species  for their ability to attract and sustain both domesticated honeybees and wild, native bees in different parts of New Mexico. This presentation will include an overview of some of the best ‘pollinator plants’ for the Albuquerque area, as well as an introduction to the fascinating diversity of wild bees endemic to New Mexico.

June 7th Saturday Field Trip. The Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) NM Plant Materials Center in Los Lunas. Dave Dreesen and Tess Grasswitz, Leaders. The NMPMC has developed plant solutions to help control erosion and sedimentation and for riparian restoration and re-vegetation projects. The PMC has developed 30 improved conservation plants including varieties of side-oats grama, blue grama and alkali sacation.   A trolley will be used to tour the outlying fields followed by a walking tour of the nursery, greenhouses and the pollinator garden. Tour begins on site at 9:30 am. Car poolers may meet at “G”  at 8:30 am to leave by 8:45 am. For different arrangements, contact Jim McGrath at 505-286-8745 or Tour will end around noon in Los Lunas.

July 9th Meeting.  “The Southwest’s First Urban National Wildlife Refuge – Albuquerque’s Valle de Oro NWR. ”  This meeting takes place on the second Wednesday of July to avoid the 4th of July week and the program is the one postponed in April. Jennifer Owen-White, refuge manager for the new Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge in the South Valley discusses the refuge’s establishment, development and the community’s vision for this great resource. Come with your ideas and questions!

July 12th Saturday Field Trip. Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge. Refuge manager Jennifer Owen-White, Leader. This field trip takes us to the South Valley to view the new urban wildlife refuge. The 1 hour tour begins at the refuge at 9:30 a.m.  Contact Jim McGrath at 505-286-8745 or to sign up. We need a minimum of 6 participants and there will be no more than 12 on this specialized tour.

Late June Field Trip. Details TBA. Pecos Wilderness to see Lady’s slipper orchids. Leader: Don Heinze.

Late July.  Possible visit to newly completed Oso Grande pollinator garden!

August. Annual Meeting of the Native Plant Society of New Mexico in El Paso. July 31- Aug 3

August Field Trips. Details TBA:

—Magdalena Mts Timber Ridge Trail (George)

—Manzanos Red Canyon (Pam & Carolyn)

September 3rd Meeting.

September Field Trip. Las Huertas Canyon with stop at the Placitas Library landscape. Details TBA.

October 1st Meeting.  “Bringing Back a Native: the Re-introduction of Gunnison’s Prairie Dogs at Sevilleta NWR.” Jon Erz, Wildlife Biologist at Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, has been working to re-establish a stable population of Gunnison’s prairie dogs on the refuge for the last six years.Bringing back this keystone species will restore the health and diversity of the grasslands. With prairie dog populations now established, Jon and researchers have been investigating how vegetation and other small mammals have responded to this reintroduction.

November 5th Meeting.  “Nearly all you ever wanted to know about BLM’s Native Plant Materials and Seeds of Success Programs.” U.S. Bureau of Land Management Botanists Mike Howard and Sheila Williams discuss BLM’s plant conservation program. Mike gives an overview and explains how the conservation program is or is not  funded and describes the specific resources the program covers nationally and within NM. Lastly, Mike describes the Native Plant Materials/Seeds of Success program both nationally and within NM. Sheila gives a short description of her duties as an agency botanist and explains her role in native plant materials development and use on the Colorado Plateau and in BLM’s Farmington District. She tells about her experiences with seed collections and development of native plant materials, and with developing and applying native seed mixes to the reclamation / restoration of surface disturbances (particularly oil and gas development).

December 6th or 7th (?) Annual Holiday Potluck. 11-2 p.m. Details tba.

January 7 2015: Landscaping with native plants in Albuquerque, presented by author George Miller.

George Miller, author of “Landscaping with Native Plants of the Southwest” and President of the Albuquerque chapter of the Native Plant Society of New Mexico, will discuss how to landscape with wildlife-friendly plants adapted to the three major ecological regions of Albuquerque. He will discuss the amazing adaptations of the plants and the animals they support and how we can restore native habitats in our yards and neighborhoods.

George Miller is an environmental photojournalist focusing on nature, wildlife, and conservation issues. In addition to “Landscaping with Native Plants of the Southwest”, he wrote the print and e-book, “Guide to Wildflowers, Trees, and Shrubs of Texas.” He will soon publish two smartphone guides to the wildflowers of New Mexico mountains and deserts with a book to follow.

A short chapter meeting precedes the talk.  Native plant books will be on display and available for purchase.  This free public program is sponsored by the Albuquerque Chapter, Native Plant Society of New Mexico, and takes place at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History, 1801 Mountain Rd. NW, Albuquerque.


                                                       MEETING PLACES


A. SE corner of Smith’s parking lot at Tramway and Central.

B. NE corner of Wal-Mart parking lot on the east side of Coors about 0.25 miles north of I-40.

C. Albertson’s parking lot at Tramway and Academy. Park along east wall.

D. Far North Shopping Center at San Mateo and Academy. Park near Wienerschnitzel.

E. Placitas. Parking lot of grocery store in Homesteads Village Shopping Center.

Directions: I-25 north from ABQ to exit 242 (second exit at Bernalillo). Turn right

and go east on Hwy 165 for approx. 5 miles to shopping center in Placitas on left. To

car pool to Placitas, meet at D (Far North Shopping Center site).

F. Michael Emery Trailhead Parking Lot. Go east to the end of Spain Road (east of Tramway). At “T” intersection   turn right and go 0.1 mile and turn left into parking lot.

G. Saver’s parking lot on Carlisle on NE side of Carlisle/Menaul intersection. Park behind Mattress Firm in SW corner of lot.

H. Los Lunas. SW corner of Home Depot parking lot by the tool sheds.

Directions: From ABQ drive south on I-25 to Exit 203. Head east through 2 traffic

lights. Home Depot is on left.


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Albuquerque Chapter Newsletters

Albuquerque Chapter Local Plant Lists

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