All the latest information

California’s Fall Colors

As one drives around in September, brilliant yellows, cheerful whites, subtle pinks, and even chartreuse greet us from bushes and roadsides. Except for the bright red leaves on Poison Oak, Toxicodendron diversilobium, few of our lower elevation natives have the...

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Water Issues

October was, thank goodness, another quiet month as far as development project review was concerned. I attended and gave input to in what appeared to be an interesting project being conducted by the Corps of Engineers concerning coast erosion and beach sand management...

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Get Involved with CNPS-SLO

There’s no time like the present to volunteer for a role with CNPS. There are several possibilities to help you find your niche within this awesome group of people. Here are some of the things going on in our chapter. The annual plant sale, for people who like to talk...

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Native Plants in the Landscape – November 2015 Meeting

Native Plants in the Landscape - Cultivating the natural beauty of the Central Coast This is a photographic tour of California Native Plant use in the landscapes of Madrone Landscapes over the last 38 years. Madrone Landscapes has been designing, installing and...

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Antirrhinum ovatum

Oval Leaved Snapdragon Drawing by Bonnie and article by Dr. Malcolm McLeod below appeared in the November, 1991 Obispoensis.   When you read it you will see lots of similarities with our current drought situation as well as the much hoped for possibilities of an...

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Gardening in deer-prone areas

This article helps you determine if you have a low, moderate, or high level of “browse” and suggests the appropriate methods for combating the problem. Also included is a brief list of plants that have shown some success when gardening in deer-prone areas.

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Planning for the Plant Sale

Now that summer is almost over, the long dry days and warm nights will give way to cool crisp mornings and as autumn approaches . . . The Plant Sale. With luck this winter will bring hopes of copious amounts of rain as predicted by the National Weather Service. El...

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A long, hot summer

Conservation Updates Summer has been quiet, thank goodness, concerning large threats to native plants. The drought and associated water restrictions are smothering a lot of development plans, at least for the moment. Topaz Solar Plant CNPS has been included in...

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Rare Plant Program – Mona Robison

Dear SLO rare plant enthusiast: SLO County will have a visitor from the CNPS state office, Mona Robison.  She was recently hired by CNPS to coordinate the State’s Rare Plant program (see attachment).  Prior to CNPS, Mona has had a rich and diverse involvement with CA...

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Field Trip to the North Coast

One of the annual favorites at CNPS-SLO is a field trip to the coastal bluffs along Highway 1, roughly two miles north of the bridge that spans Arroyo de la Cruz.  This outing has been held either in May or June each year, depending on the seasonal temperatures and...

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Mission Plaza – San Luis Creek Restoration Project

Earlier this year, SLO city officials approached CNPS with the idea of restoring the deteriorated riparian habitat, which runs through the downtown adjacent to the Mission Plaza, with California native species. Our local chapter has embraced this project with great...

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Landscaping in drought

As we search for answers to deal with the prolonged drought, I'm sure many of you are wondering what this summer will do to your landscape? Luckily, most of you are well ahead of the game because you already have planted California native plants in your garden....

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Rare Plant Group Formed

By pooling local resources, members of the California Native Plants Society (CNPS) along with students and faculty at Cal Poly University have created a rare plant working group to address the twin tasks of monitoring rare plant populations on the central coast, while...

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Wild pigs vs. salt marshes

Inspired by David Keil's fantastic workshop last meeting on the plants of the Morro Bay tidal marsh, I decided to do some exploration there, armed with his excellent identification key. I ran into a conservation issue that I did not expect to see in a salt marsh …...

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Chapter Meeting – Michael Kauffmann

Thursday, June 4, 2015, 7 p.m. at the San Luis Obispo Veterans Hall, 801 Grand Avenue, San Luis Obispo Exploring the Conifers of the Pacific Slope Over the past 10 years Michael Kauffmann has explored most of the mountain ranges in the West with a particular focus on...

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Call to Horticulturists

With the successful creation of the rare-plant working group during the past few months, I would like to suggest our chapter broaden its horizons a bit more by assembling a horticulture working group. I bring this point up because CNPS is one of a very few...

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Chapter Meeting – Connie Rutherford

Title: Chapter Meeting - Connie Rutherford Location: San Luis Obispo Veterans Hall, 801 Grand Avenue, SLO Description: Thursday, May 7, 2015, 7 p.m. at the San Luis Obispo Veterans Hall, 801 Grand Avenue, SLO Does the Endangered Species Act Help Recover Listed Plant...

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Sudden Oak Death Blitz #3 2015

Sudden Oak Death Blitz #3 - 2015 San Luis Obispo – May 15, 16, 17 (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) Sudden Oak Death (SOD), a serious exotic disease, is threatening the survival of tanoak and several oak species in California. Currently SOD is found in 14 coastal California...

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Conservation May 2015

As I explained in last month’s newsletter, we didn’t expect to wring any more concessions from the County, and so that now a solar developer can take a 40 acre parcel and turn it to solar without an environmental impact report, just a biological study where CNPS will...

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Conservation April 2015

CNPS addressed the SLO County Planning Commission three times, and the Board of Supervisors once regarding plans to change local zoning to allow solar and wind projects to be 'fast-tracked'. As a result it seems CNPS will be notified when a project enters the fast...

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President’s Input April 2015

The results of our membership survey are now available for review. Interestingly, the topic that received the most responses by far was plant lists for popular trails and local parks. There was a group of topics that clustered in the middle. These included: trainings...

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Wildflowers and Wildflower Places in San Luis Obispo County

Thursday, April 16, 2015, 7:00 pm, Vets Hall, San Luis Obispo Wildflowers and Wildflower Places in San Luis Obispo County Dr. David Keil Join us in celebration of California native Plant Week for Dr. Keil’s captivating presentation demonstrating the broad botanical...

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Conservation – March 2015

Fast-tracked Solar and Wind Projects CNPS continues to testify to the SLO County Planning Commission regarding plans to change local zoning to allow solar and wind projects to be “fast-tracked.” This, in effect, removes any biological reports for projects from review...

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Tell us your priorities!

From Bill Waycott: Your thoughts about our local chapter and its priorities for the coming year are important to me. During the February meeting, I presented some ideas attempting to illustrate where we have been up till now and where we might like to go in the...

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Spring Fair

Title: Spring Fair Location: Dana Adobe 671 S. Oakglen Ave Nipomo, CA 93444 Description: Support Dana Adobe, local businesses & services, handcraft owners & non-profit organizations at this Spring Vendor Faire. Start Time: 10:00 Date:...

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Pacific Grove Annual Wildflower Show

Title: Pacific Grove Annual Wildflower Show Location: Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History Link out: Click here Description: For over half a century this Wildflower Show has been one of the largest on the Northern and Western hemispheres with over 600 species and...

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Malcolm McLeod Annual Field Trip Meeting at Shell Creek

Saturday, 4th April, 2015, Malcolm McLeod Annual Field Trip Meeting at Shell Creek. Join us to explore and appreciate the remarkable and unique display of annual and perennial spring wildflowers in eastern San Luis Obispo County. Meet at the Santa Margarita...

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Chapter Meeting – Matt Ritter

Our March meeting is held in Atascadero to accommodate our over-the-grade members. Please join us Thursday, March 5, 2015, 7 p.m. at the new Atascadero Library, 6555 Capistrano Avenue. Matt Ritter, Speaker Matt Ritter is the California coordinator of the American...

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< 2017 >
  • 02

    7:00 pm-9:00 pm
    SLO Vets Hall
    801 Grand Ave, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    Speaker: Dena Grossenbacher, Alpine plant diversity on Yosemite’s Sky Islands

    Dena Grossenbacher is a new Assistant Professor of Botany at CalPoly. She is broadly interested in how plant-environment interactions generate and maintain plant diversity, and the processes underlying the origin and extinction of species. She uses the California flora,
    especially monkeyflowers, to address these questions because of their astonishing variation both among and within species.

    Dena received a Bachelor’s degree in Botany in 1999 from University of Washington, was a field botanist in the Pacific Northwest and the Yosemite region from 2000-2008, and received a Ph.D. in Population Biology from UC Davis in 2013 with Maureen Stanton. She did postdocs studying mating system evolution at University of Minnesota and at Washington State University before arriving at Cal Poly
    in January 2017.

    Chapter meetings are generally held the first Thursday of the month at the San Luis Obispo Vets Hall on Grande Ave near the corner of Monterey Street.

    Our meetings kick off with a social time that begins at 7:00 p.m.  This  is a time to sample the treats that members have brought along to share,  and browse the book table. The meeting starts at 7:30 p.m. with some  brief announcements before the program begins.

    Speakers and notes from Chapter Meetings are documented in each  Obispoensis newsletter. Please see the Obispoensis archive for PDF file  of each newsletter.

  • 04

    9:00 am-2:00 pm
    Pacific Beach High School
    11950 Los Osos Valley Rd, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405, USA

    It’s the annual event you’ve been waiting for. Create your drought-tolerant native garden with help from CNPS-SLO!

    Local native plant enthusiasts are hosting a sale of water-thrifty California Native Plants. Tips and advice for all garden situations available at no additional charge.

    Hundreds of plant varieties for yards and gardens will be available. Many are excellent for attracting birds and butterflies to your garden. Native plants are adapted to this area so they save water, and reduce the need for pesticides and fertilizers.

  • 11

    8:30 am-11:30 am
    Costco SLO
    1540 Froom Ranch Way, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405, USA

    Saturday, Nov. 11th, 8:30 am to 11:30 am

    Work Crew, Old Prospector Trail, Irish Hills

    Meet in the Costco parking lot, adjacent to the Costco gas station, Los Osos Valley Road, SLO. From there, we will walk to the trail.

    Join hikers who want to help keep trails in good shape. We will be using loppers to remove branches of Ceanothus and other chaparral plants out of the trail, then cache the cut pieces off the trail.

    The upper half of the trail was completed in October, so work will focus on the lower half. Total distance will be 3 to 4 miles with a 500 ft. elevation gain. Use a small backpack to bring water, snacks, and sunscreen. Wear sturdy shoes, bring gloves, a hat, and layered clothing, as needed. Contact Bill Waycott, (805) 459-2103,

    Rain cancels.

  • 21

    11:00 am-4:00 pm
    Growing Grounds Farm Wholesale Nursery
    3740 Orcutt Rd, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    Growing Grounds Farm is a non-profit wholesale nursery located in San Luis Obispo. Growing Grounds offers California natives, Mediterranean perennials, succulents, restoration and mitigation plants, a wide variety of grasses, and a selection of perennial herbs.

    Growing Grounds Farm is a wholesale nursery and does not sell directly to the public except on the 3rd Tuesday of each month from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m