Annual Evelyn McNeill Sims Native Plant Lecture
The Southeastern Grasslands Initiative: Charting a New Course for Conservation in the 21st Century
with Dwayne Estes, Executive Director, Southeastern Grasslands Initiative
Sunday, April 7, 2019
2:30 PM-3:30 PM
Free; preregistration required
Reception to follow
Many of our favorite native wildflowers are species adapted to open, sunny, grassy habitats, and while we use some of these plants horticulturally, their native stocks have dwindled. Grassland loss is the single greatest conservation issue currently facing eastern North American biodiversity. Southern grasslands are nearly extinct and the species that depend on them are fading fast.
Join us for a fascinating and stereotype-shattering tour of North Carolina's natural landscapes just a few hundred years ago: bison, prairies, and sun-loving wildflowers. What are the challenges these landscapes face and how can we get back these landscapes that form important components of our natural and cultural heritage of North Carolina?
The Southeastern Grasslands Initiative (SGI) is a collaboration of leaders in international biodiversity conservation led by the Austin Peay State University Center of Excellence for Field Biology, in partnership with the North Carolina Botanical Garden, Roundstone Native Seed, Botanical Research Institute of Texas, Tennessee Plant Conservation Alliance, and soon to include many others. SGI seeks to integrate on-the-ground conservation, education, outreach, and research, along with the administration of grants, to create innovative solutions to address the multitude of complex issues facing Southeastern grasslands, the most imperiled ecosystems in eastern North America.