Date(s) - Mon Feb 15, 2021
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Botanical Quest: Documenting Michigan’s Rare Native Flora Through Photography
ZOOM presentation by:
Craig Elston, Photographer – CDE Nature, Naturalist – City of Hudsonville, President of White Pine Chapter – Michigan Botanical Club, 2nd Vice President of Wildflower Association of Michigan
Link to register for this Zoom Webinar to come.
The program will highlight Craig’s quest for finding and photographing rare and not so common native plant species in Michigan. Plants from all corners of the state will be shown and he will be telling the stories of his adventures locating them—from the Southwest lower corner to the Western U.P. and back to the Eastern U.P. and down to the Southeast lower corner of the state and many areas in between. “If you are comfortable on your outings, you aren’t finding exciting plants.”
As a Michigan native, Craig Elston has always been interested in nature from his youth on his grandparent’s farm through the present. He has also always been interested in growing plants and has had a great interest in native plants for most of his adult life. Craig has been leading interpretive hikes at the Hudsonville Nature Center since the mid 1990s. He has also led walks and presented lectures or slide programs at other nature centers, including Hoffmaster State Park’s Gillette Visitor Center, Frederik Meijer Gardens, the Michigan Botanical Club, various events for MSU County Extensions in West Michigan and other garden clubs or nature organizations. As a member of the Hudsonville Parks and Grounds committee from 1988 and has been the Naturalist for the City since 2001, he was involved in planting a Tall Grass Prairie in the Nature center. He has earned the Advanced Master Gardener from Ottawa County. In 2003 he was privileged to be a part of the Kent County MSU Extension’s Master Naturalist program from its inception, developing and writing the Prairie Environments segment with time both indoors and in the field for first hand personal experience. His interest for Michigan’s native flora is not just observation and photographing, but propagation and cultivation of these marvelous gems. Craig finds it exciting to not only learn about these habitats and their inhabitants, but also to share with others who are interested and willing to listen. Finding species that are new to him or rare species is always exciting. An interest in the native plant Jeffersonia diphylla has led to an almost obsession with Thomas Jefferson and Monticello.