Letter to Wild Ones River City Members and Friends

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Letter to Wild Ones River City Members and Friends


WORC President Marti MacArthur in her urban native garden.

As I write this note to you I certainly hope that you are healthy and managing the anxiety of this pandemic as best you can. I find that I sometimes want to retreat from having to think about any of it—to realizing that the things that I value still need attention. Perhaps a new way of thinking is needed in order to cope with the many unknown questions with which I must contend.

Once again, Mother Nature is providing comfort to me with the daily unrolling to Spring that I can observe in my yard. The birds are returning and singing their songs; the early moss and Spring ephemerals are beginning to emerge and there are buds on my spicebush and dogwoods which will continue to grow with each warming day. This reassures me that time will continue to pass and this uncertainty and trauma will not last forever.

In the meantime, your Board Members of Wild Ones River City Chapter are trying to figure out how to stay connected and supportive of you in your endeavors to plant more native plants in your yards and to create ecologically healthy plant communities. Sadly, we’ve had to cancel our March and April Chapter meetings because it was the only decision that made any sense under these circumstances. We will be holding our first virtual Board Meeting on April 2nd and we’ll see what looks possible to us at that time.

However, you can still use this time to deepen your understanding of native plants through reading the Spring Wild Ones Journal, which arrived in your email if you are a member. You can also watch Doug Tallamy present to different audiences by watching some of his lectures on YouTube. Maybe you have a book that you bought and just haven’t had time to read. Now, before the weather gets too nice, might be a great time to open that book and transport yourself to a garden filled with native plants. Luckily, a walk in a park or nature area—as long as there are distances between people—is still a great way to feel that connection to nature and the unfolding season.

When this passes and it is safe for us to return to being together again, we will truly understand how valuable our relationships are for each of us. I miss seeing each of you and feeling the energy that comes from those times when we are together supporting each other in our efforts to “heal the earth, one yard at a time”. There are details that will need to be worked out and things will be different for a while, but I trust that your love of Mother Nature and native plants will help carry you through this time and will continue when we emerge from our own cocoons.

Take care and stay healthy,

Marti MacArthur
Wild OnesRiver City Chapter
Grand Rapids, Michigan