Wildflower is published quarterly by the Wildflower Center. Its content is national in scope with articles about the conservation and use of native plants as well as news from the Wildflower Center. A subscription is provided to Wildflower Center members as a benefit of membership.
Letter from the Editor - Summer 2005Just as I wrapped up the majority of this issue of Native Plants magazine, a student of landscape architecture and longtime member of the Wildflower Center remarked to me about how useful he'd found a study of ours on the use of native seed for roadside plantings. He told me, "I had no idea how involved the Wildflower Center was in so many things."
This can be a common response from members or visitors to the Center when learning about an aspect of its work that is new to them. For example, some people who may know all about the Center's participation in restoration research projects may not be aware of the part the Center plays in conservation issues. Those who are aware of the Center's role as a partnering organization with the Center for Plant Conservation and participant in the Millennium Seed Bank project at the Royal Botanic Garden, Kew, may not know that the Center's Landscape Restoration Program team is called on by private landowners in Texas to help them manage their land. Some people who never miss a Center plant sale and frequent its home in Austin have no idea that the Center's Web site boasts more information on more native North American plant species than any other, while others frequently use the site to get answers to tricky gardening questions.
This is a good sign that people visit and join the Center for different reasons and based on diverse interests. With each issue of Native Plants magazine, we try to cover as many topics that tell as much of the whole story about the Wildflower Center's work and interests as possible.
In this and every issue, our Field Notes section helps tell that story with the publication of news that is exclusive to the Wildflower Center. On page 7, you will find an article about our affiliate program through which the Center partners with native plant societies and arboreta nationwide to share information about native plant use and conservation. This section also reports the Center's launching of a new study on the benefits of commercial green roofs in Austin, and on the loss of a friend of the Center and renowned native plant gardening advocate Sara Stein. More news that is limited to the Center can be found on page 29 within our Sowing Seeds section, where in this issue we detail how donations make possible our participation in the Millennium Seed Bank project.
As always, our featured articles reflect our commitment to native plant conservation, restoration, and use. "The Life Aquatic," (page 12) will help you create a water garden and select the best aquatic plants for where you live. "Silver Belles" (page 24) touts the benefits of drought-tolerant silver plants. And "Plant Pathogens" (page 18) explores the devastating effects of plant diseases and how the most notorious came to be. This issue also explores native bulbs (page 11) and native meadows (page 30). The fun is saved for last and brought to you in our Root of the Matter column (page 32), where we teach kids of all ages how to raise a butterfly.
We hope that, wherever you are, you've gotten as much information as we could bring you about the Wildflower Center and natives in general with this issue of Native Plants.