The Native Plant Society of New Jersey
Annual Fall Conference 2017 


Seed Swap Highlights 

Best seed exchange in NJ and maybe in the world? We had 94 NJ native plant species available free at our annual seed exchange.

Thank you all for contributing and participating! Check our complete list to see what you missed and what additional plants we still need at the next fall meeting.

About 700 packages of seeds were selected, at the fall annual meeting, from the 94 available species. Thanks to so many of you especially those who separated milkweed seeds from the silk; I know that is a labor of love.

A list of the species which were available is given below. As you can see from the list we could use some species such as Lupine, MD Golden Aster, Stiff Aster, Blueberries, Huckleberries, Pines, Swamp Pink, Turk's Cap Lily, and any perennial Gentian.

Seed Exchange List 

Hubert Ling- Horticulture Chair


NPSNJ Fall Conference will be held:
Saturday, November 4, 2017

9:00 AM - Registration and check-in
9:45 AM - Opening remarks              
10:00 AM to 4:00 PM - Program         

Raritan Valley Community College
Main Campus, 118 Lamington Road, Branchburg, NJ
campus map
Conference Center near Lot 1

We have a exciting line up of speakers and fall is the time for planting, and so there will be a native plant sale and a native plant seed swap.


  • 9:00 Registration and check-in

  • 9:45 Opening remarks

  • 10:00 Dr. Chris Martine: Topic: Use of social media to spread the word about plants and biodiversity to the public.

    Dr. Chris Martine is a biodiversity scientist with a particular focus on plants, especially the ecology and evolution of plant reproduction. Much of his work has been in the plant family Solanaceae, including more than a decade looking into the unusual breeding systems of the genus Solanum in northern Australia through a combination of field studies and molecular phylogenetics. His broad interests in natural history have also kept him rooted in his home region, the northeastern US, where he has engaged in field-based studies with students and colleagues

  • 11:15 Mid-Morning Break

  • 11:30 Kaz Uyehara : Title: Plants And The Ecological Games They Play

    People are interested in plants for many reasons, including their natural beauty, the joy of growing and tending to plants, and the thrill of seeing new species. Ecologists often have an additional and much darker interest in plants. The driving force underlying plant evolution and the diversity of plant traits is plant vs. plant competition. While I enjoy peaceful walks through plant communities, I also see plants as fierce competitors engaged in a constant battle for survival. In this talk, I will provide an ecologist's perspective on familiar topics such as disturbance and morphology, while hopefully drawing connections to some ecosystem level properties.

    Kaz Uyehara graduated from Swarthmore College with a degree in Biology and Environmental Studies. Afterwards, he taught high school science, math, and computer science outside of Philadelphia. Now, Kaz is finishing his Ph. D in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Princeton University. His research is currently focused on competitive interactions between plants and how they relate to fire ecology and plant structure. Kaz hopes to continue doing research related to plants that can be connected to issues such as climate change and biodiversity.

  • 12:45 Lunch Break

  • 1:45 Dr. John Dighton: Title: The Multiple Roles of Fungi in Soil That Underpin Plant Production

    This talk will outline the many roles that fungi play in soil development, stability and provision of nutrients for plant growth. Fungi are involved in the breakdown of rock that provides the mineral component of soil and, through their decomposition of dead plant and animal remains, regulate nutrient supply to support plant growth. The acquisition of nutrients is enhanced by the symbiotic relationship between plant roots and fungi, known as mycorrhizae. In natural ecosystems these mycorrhizae may be important in regulating plant community composition. Through their role as mycorrhizae and saprotrophs in soil, fungi can play an important role in regulating global carbon cycles and modify toxicity of pollutants in soil. As we all know, fungi rule the world!

    Dr. Dighton: B.S. Biology-London University, M.S. Ecology- University of Durham, Ph. D. London University.

    He worked for 15 years on research of forest soils, forest mycorrhizae, interactions of mycorrhizae with radionuclides, and forest nutrition in fast growing trees at Institute of Terrestrial Ecology, U.K

    From 1994 to present, he is a professor at Rutgers University, Dept. of Ecology and director of the Pinelands Field Station teaching soil ecology and mycology and doing research on forest soil ecology and mycology. He has over 100 peer reviewed publications and recent books on soil and fungal ecology

  • 3:00 Mid afternoon Break

  • 3:15 Dr. Sharon Wander: Topic: Butterflies at Risk

    Of the 125 or so butterfly species that call New Jersey home, more than a fifth are currently (or proposed to be) listed as Endangered, Threatened, or Special Concern. Their lives are closely connected with the native plants that provide food for their caterpillars. Sharon will discuss many of these species and explore what we know about the ecological relationships that affect their populations.

    A self-employed environmental consultant, Sharon is president of the New Jersey Butterfly Club, a chapter of the North American Butterfly Association. She and her husband, Wade, have long been active New Jersey naturalists, interested in birds, herptiles, plants, and butterflies (as well as moths and other insects). They are especially proud of their Fredon Township butterfly garden, which has attracted 84 species of butterflies. Sharon is editor of the annual Butterfly Count Report for the North American Butterfly Association, and has served on the most recent New Jersey state committee assembled to evaluate the status of New Jersey butterflies.

REGISTRATION: Ticket is $60 for non members and $40 for members. The fee includes lunch. Lunch this year will be a hot buffet style lunch with vegetarian and gluten free options. You will notice a slight price increase this year to offset the increased cost of the lunch. We feel that having a hot lunch is preferable to the box lunch we have had in the past.

Members have already been sent the password for a significant discount in the registration fees, so if you have not received the discount password, it means that according to our records, you need to pay your 2016 dues. If you believe you have paid your 2017 dues, please contact Membership with your check number or Pay-pal receipt number.  

To renew your membership or become a member for the first time go the Native Plant Society of NJ website  

We will also have the last public native plant sale in NJ this year and a native plant seed swap. Don't have any seeds to trade? Don't worry, you can still take some home. Please see below.

To register:

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Please start collecting native plant seeds now for our seed exchange!

Last year we had about 70 species of NJ native plants seeds available for NPSNJ members at the fall meeting. You do not have to bring seeds to participate in the seed swap but we strongly encourage everyone to make every effort to bring seeds to the next exchange. We are particularly interested in collecting large amounts of cleaned, common, purple and any other milkweed to help in restoring butterfly populations; flying milkweed chaff is a nuisance so please provide cleaned seed whenever possible. Please note that the mints (Mountain Mints, Monardas, Hyssops etc.) drop their seeds rapidly so collect them when the heads are still half green! We could also use many seeds from South NJ and the Pine Barrens.

The Native Plant Society horticulturist: Hubert Ling, hopes to make 40 species available. If members can supply another 40-50 native NJ species we will have the best exchange ever. Seeds should be labeled with scientific name, common name, original site of origin (if known). Growing conditions would also be appreciated: soil, flower color, height, sun tolerance etc. Start collecting seeds now: help restore NJ's biodiversity and ecological health, and have fun.

Remember to collect responsibly. Take seeds only where you have permission from the owner. Collection from plants in parks and other public areas is illegal. Also, take no more than ten percent of the seeds available. Leave some to repopulate the area and to feed local wildlife.

Hubert Ling,