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February 2022


Ken-O-Sha: Working for Reconciliation in a West Michigan Watershed

This event has ended
Monday, February 21st, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

Will be Recorded Public Welcome Free Event Chapter Meeting Program/Speaker Presentation

Ken-O-Sha: Working for Reconciliation in a West Michigan Watershed ZOOM presentation by Dr. Dave Warners, Professor, Calvin University Department of Biology, Director, Plaster Creek Stewards Registration required • REGISTER This presentation will take a deep dive into the history of the Plaster Creek Watershed, from around 360 million years ago to the present. The historical account will help us better understand how Plaster Creek has become such a degraded human health hazard. We will consider how different people groups—Hopewell, Ottawa, European immigrants—have interacted with the creek and what has to happen to return the creek to a more healthy, life-supporting waterway again. SPOILER ALERT: More native plants are needed! Download the resources pdf for this presentation. Dave Warners grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan and graduated from Calvin College with a major in biology and chemistry in 1985. Dave holds a Master's degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a PhD in Botany from the University of Michigan. Between graduate degrees, Dave and his wife Teri lived and worked for the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee in Tanzania from 1990-1992. He has been teaching ecology, botany and research courses at Calvin for 22 years while doing research with students in conservation, restoration, and plant evolution. Dave is the Director of Plaster Creek Stewards, a community-based watershed restoration initiative at Calvin University, work that has included reintroducing native gardens into urban and industrial areas. Together with Garrett Crow he has also been involved with the Emma Cole Project, and effort to re-visit and botanically evaluate all the sites that Emma Cole mention in her 1901 book, Grand Rapids Flora. REGISTER  

March 2022


Managing Habitat for Monarch Butterflies

This event has ended
Monday, March 21st, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

Will be Recorded Public Welcome Free Event Chapter Meeting Program/Speaker Presentation

Zoom Presentation • Registration required REGISTER 

Managing Habitat for Monarch Butterflies Dr. Nathan Haan will give an overview of the ecology and natural history of monarch butterflies and share some of his research group’s findings related to monarch conservation, their relationship to their milkweed host plant, and their interactions with other arthropods.   Dr. Haan is an ecologist and researcher at Michigan State University. His research focuses on interactions between insects and plants with the goal of using ecological science to help inform biodiversity conservation and agricultural sustainability. Nate completed his PhD at the University of Washington and MS at the University of Michigan. 

May 2022


Garlic Mustard Pull and creative ways to use it and Native Plant Exchange

This event has ended
Monday, May 16th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

Garlic Mustard Pull and creative ways to use it Plus a Native Plant Exchange Field trip led by Barbara Zvirzdinis, Wild Ones River City (WORC) Programs Committee Co-Chair with support from Kent County Parks and Recreation Rogue River Park Trailhead parking address: 6240 Belmont Ave. NE, Belmont, MI 49306 We will meet at the West end of the parking lot and head out to pull invasive garlic mustard in the park. You will likely see Spring ephemerals in the park! Pot up some of your native plants and bring for our Native Plant Exchange. Leave plants in your car or next to your car during the garlic mustard pull. (See plant exchange instructions below.) Closed-toe shoes with socks recommended. Gloves and bags for garlic mustard will be provided by Kent County Parks. Download recipes for using garlic mustard in the kitchen. Barbara will be giving away 2 eco-printed, garlic mustard dyed scarves! BIOGRAPHY: Barbara Zvirzdinis is the WORC Programs Co-Chair for 2022 and Program Chair 2023. She has been using native and non-native plants for dyeing and eco-printing fabrics, bookmaking and making clothes since 2016. She has taught a variety of mixed media art classes along with dyeing fabric using plants and indigo. Barbara had a alternative health practice for many years in the Cherry Hill district, where she used her talents as a Certified Wholistic Kinesiologist, Certified Matrix Energetics Practitioner, Certified Massage Therapist, Reconnection Healing Practitioner, Certified Herbalist and Certified Acutonics Practitioner to help her clients achieve balance in their lives. She has taught workshops on Manifesting Your Hearts Desires, Healing Sound Mantras, Know Your Parasites, Herbal Remedies for the cold and flu season, Herbal Home skin care. Barbara is semi-retired and maintains a small practice in her home. NATIVE PLANT EXCHANGE Bring some native plants from your yard to share with your fellow Wild Ones and take some home for yourself. All plants are FREE! Plant Exchange Rules of Etiquette:  The purpose of the Plant Exchange is to foster natural landscaping with native plants. Please bring plants to share from your garden that you know to be true native species, please no invasive exotics! Respect Plants - Plants may not get planted immediately, pot them up well so they can survive. Please provide species labels for the transplants and label them with moisture/sun requirements. Respect Yourself - Just starting out? Don’t have plants to bring? Of course you may still take plants! In fact, that is one of the main purposes of the Plant Exchange. We all had to get started somehow, and when native plants start doing really well in your yard, bring some back to share. It is the “Plant It Forward” concept! Respect Others - If there are only a few pots of a particular species, please take only one so that others may have a chance to get one too. " Garlic Mustard Photo: Chris Evans, University of Illinois, Pulled plants should be bagged and placed in trash — do NOT compost or leave pulled plants on site. MAY 2022 PROGRAM ENHANCEMENTS By the WORC Education Committee We have an alien plant intruder in the Midwest and Northeast, and spreading across the country called Garlic Mustard. Our country’s own settlers introduced this culinary and medicinal herb native to Europe and Asia by planting it in their gardens in the Northeastern U.S. in the late 1800s. Our early settlers called this plant a potherb meaning any plant used as seasoning by cooking in a pot. However, these plants jumped their gardens and have been spreading westward ever since! The plant lacks sufficient predators to keep it in check that enhances its dominance. Learn more about garlic mustard and 10 more invasive species in West Michigan by reviewing this comprehensive brochure issued by the West Michigan Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (CISMA). This brochure will be available free to all attendees.  

June 2022


Farmers Market Days - Native Plant Sale

This event has ended
Friday, June 3rd, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

2022 Farmers Market Days Native Plant Sales June 3 & June 24 8:00 am-2 pm

JUNE 3 FEATURED NATIVE PLANT GUILD MEMBER: Esther Durnwald, Michigan Wildflower Farm Michigan Native Seed only (no live plants on June 3)   JUNE 24 FEATURED NATIVE PLANT GUILD MEMBERS: Tammy Lundeen, She is Growing Wild

Hard to find species: Twinleaf, Jack-in-the-pulpit, and Bloodroot will be sold among other native plants.

Debra Montgomery, Go Grow Plant Natives, LLC

Featuring Sweet Joe Pye weed, Lead plant, Pale woodland sunflower, Bush honeysuckle, Maple leaf viburnum, and much more!

Esther Durnwald, Michigan Wildflower Farm (native seeds)   Wild Ones River City Chapter members will be handing out native plant informational materials and answering questions.  


15th Anniversary Celebration

This event has ended
Monday, June 20th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

    Wild Ones River City 15th Anniversary Celebration Healing Our Earth...small steps make a big impact June 20, 2022

Aquinas College Performing Arts Center 1703 Robinson Road S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49506

5-7:00 pm - Expo with Community Partners

7-8:30 pm - Keynote Speaker

Dr. Douglas Tallamy presenting Nature's Best Hope

Dr. Tallamy's books will be available for purchase at the event

FREE Event • Registration required

Download the event flyer pdf

There are a few tickets available now.

If full, periodically check the link below to see if tickets become available. OR, come the day of the event as there will likely be some no-shows.

Dr. Douglas Tallamy is a professor in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, where he has authored eighty research articles and has taught Insect Taxonomy, Behavioral Ecology, Humans and Nature, and other courses for thirty-two years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities. His book Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens was published by Timber Press in 2007 and was awarded the 2008 silver medal by the Garden Writer’s Association. Tallamy was awarded the Garden Club of America Margaret Douglas Medal for Conservation and the Tom Dodd Jr. Award of Excellence in 2013. Douglas W. Tallamy’s first book, Bringing Nature Home, awakened thousands of readers to an urgent situation: wildlife populations are in decline because the native plants they depend on are fast disappearing. His solution? Plant more natives. In Nature's Best Hope, Tallamy takes the next step and outlines his vision for a grassroots approach to conservation. Nature’s Best Hope shows how homeowners everywhere can turn their yards into conservation corridors that provide wildlife habitats. Because this approach relies on the initiatives of private individuals, it is immune from the whims of government policy. Even more important, it’s practical, effective, and easy—you will walk away with specific suggestions you can incorporate into your own yard. If you’re concerned about doing something good for the environment, Nature’s Best Hope is the blueprint you need. By acting now, you can help preserve our precious wildlife—and the planet—for future generations.


Come join us to celebrate Wild Ones River City’s 15 years of educating and advocating for native plant landscapes! The “Healing Our Earth… small steps make a big impact” Celebration is scheduled for next June 20, 2022 at the Aquinas Performing Arts Center. The Celebration will include an Expo with our community partners and a keynote speaker. The organizations at the Expo will provide information on environmental issues and local resources. They can help you discover ways to connect and make a difference in our natural world. Our keynote speaker is Dr. Douglas Tallamy, a premier expert on biodiversity. Dr. Tallamy has been calling for action to increase biodiversity by installing native plant landscapes for many years. In his book Nature’s Best Hope he asks the question: “… what if each American landowner converted half of his or her yard to productive native plant communities?… If Americans replanted half of their lawns with native plants, shrubs and trees, we would have more wildlife habitat than all the national parks combined.” This celebration is for those who have been landscaping with native plants for many years as well as for those who are just starting out. We want Dr. Tallamy’s message to be available to anyone who is interested—and feel that no one should have to pay to hear it. With the help of a few sponsoring organizations/businesses, we believe this is possible. Wildtype Native Plant Nursery, Michigan Wildflower Farm, Comstock Park Urban Prairie, Nativedge Native Gardens & Landscapes, Native Plant Guild, and The Garden Guru LLC,  Designs by Nature LLC, and Wild Ones River City Chapter Board of Directors have generously offered to be sponsors for this event. If you know of other organizations or businesses that might consider being a sponsor, please contact Linda Gary, [email protected].  


Ada Township Parks

Adapt: Community Supported Ecology

Audubon Grand Rapids

Bartlett Tree Experts

Blandford Nature Center

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park

Growing Green Grand Rapids

Kent Conservation District

Land Conservancy of West Michigan

LGROW/GR Metro Council

Michigan Botanical Club

Michigan Nature Association

Native Edge, Native Gardens & Landscapes

Native Plant Guild

Ottawa County Parks Foundation

Plaster Creek Stewards

The Garden Guru K-zoo

West Michigan Conservation Network

Wild Birds Unlimited

Wild Ones River City Chapter Board of Directors

Wittenbach/Wege Agri-science Center


Banner photos by Dr. Douglas Tallamy


Farmers Market Native Plant Sales

This event has ended
Friday, June 24th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)
Fulton Street Farmers Market, 1145 Fulton St E, Grand Rapids, MI, 49503 Map

Public Welcome Free Event Family Friendly Seed/Plant Sale Wheelchair Accessible Public Restroom Free Public Parking

Native Plant Sale and Native Plant Information sponsored by Wild Ones River City featuring Native Plant Sale Growers.

July 2022


2022 Annual Native Plant Sale Fundraiser

This event has ended
Wednesday, July 20th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

Annual Fundraiser

15 species of native perennials • 5 species of shrubs

Books, Garden Signs, and Wild Ones Posters also for sale.

Pre-order and Pickup Only

Pay by Paypal/Credit Card No checks accepted for payment when ordering online. Checks are accepted at the Browse & Buy on pickup day.

Wild Ones members get advance ordering June 23 through June 30. Join Wild Ones Public Ordering July 1 through 14 at

Download the species list

Pickup Date: Wednesday, July 20 anytime between 5-7 pm and BROWSE & BUY extra plants from our growers. Pickup at the Fulton Street Farmer's Market

1145 Fulton St E, Grand Rapids, MI 49503 Use back entrance on Fountain Street

Native Plant Guild Growers:

Tammy Lundeen, She is Growing Wild Debra Montgomery, Go Grow Native Plants, LLC Vern Stephens, Designs by Nature, LLC Joe Sulak, Designs By Nature - West, LLC

August 2022


Native Plant Education Garden - Open Garden and Fundraiser at Brewery Vivant

This event has ended
Monday, August 1st, 2022
to (Eastern Time)

Will be Recorded Public Welcome Free Event Family Friendly Nature Walk/Hike

Native Plant Education Garden (NPEG) Open Garden and Buck-a-Beer Fundraiser at Brewery Vivant 6-7:30 pm

Come visit our Wild Ones Native Plant Education Garden and talk with member experts about native plants. See Michigan’s native plants in an urban garden setting and learn how you can plant your own!

The garden is located at 920 Cherry Street SE, Grand Rapids 

Fundraiser for Wild Ones River City Chapter

Before or after you visit the garden, go across the street and enjoy a brew!  Brewery Vivant, will donate $1 for every beer sold during pub hours on 8/1/22, 3 pm to 10 pm.

CHEERS! Brewery Vivant August 1, 22022 • 3 pm-10 pm 925 Cherry St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49506      


Prairie Wildflowers and Ecology

This event has ended
Monday, August 15th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)
Hudsonville Nature Center, 2800 New Holland St, Hudsonville, MI, 49426 Map

Public Welcome Free Event Chapter Meeting Program/Speaker Presentation Nature Walk/Hike Lots of Physical Activity

Craig Elston led a walk through the Hudsonville Nature Center prairie and identified species.

September 2022


Farmers Market Native Plant Sale

This event has ended
Friday, September 9th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)
Fulton Street Farmers Market, 1145 Fulton St E, Grand Rapids, MI, 49503 Map

Public Welcome Free Event Family Friendly Seed/Plant Sale Wheelchair Accessible Public Restroom Free Public Parking

Native Plant Sale sponsored by Wild Ones River City Chapter featuring Native Plant Guild growers.


Green Infrastructure Bus Tour with Grand Valley Metro Council (GVMC)

This event has ended
Monday, September 19th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)
Grand Valley Metro Council (GVMC), 678 Front Ave NW, Grand Rapids, MI, 49504 Map

Public Welcome Free Event Chapter Meeting Group Tour Public Restroom Free Public Parking Lots of Physical Activity

Building on the introductory Green Infrastructure (GI) Program given in 2020, the GI bus tour will show different examples of Green Infrastructure that has been completed in the Grand Rapids area. The focus will be on GI in the Lower Grand River Watershed, as well as demonstrate the results of a successful partnership with The Rapid, City of Grand Rapids, and Lower Grand River Organization of Watersheds (LGROW). Examples of GI on the tour include a green roof, a rain garden, a bioswale, permiable pavement, stormwater reuse as well as a living wall all found in the Grand Rapids area.

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November 2022


2022 Annual Meeting/Seed Swap

This event has ended
Monday, November 14th, 2022
to (Eastern Time)
Bunker Interpretive Center, Calvin University, 1750 E Beltline Ave SE, Grand Rapids, MI, 49546 Map

Chapter Meeting Chapter Social Seed/Plant Swap Wheelchair Accessible Public Restroom Free Public Parking Drinking Fountains

Join us for fun evening to connect with your fellow Wild Ones and to meet newcomers! 
We will be celebrating the end of our 15th year as a chapter and our accomplishments this year. The River City 2023 officers and board members will be introduced.
Cake and beverages will be served.
Attendees are encouraged to bring native seeds from their garden. 

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