Sunday, February 15, 2015


On Saturday, March 28, 2015 we had a room full of people at FLCC interested in learning from Dr. Bruce Gilman how to identify tree species without their leaves. Bruce set out specimens of logs, twigs, and fruits/seeds at each table for folks to enjoy a hands-on practicum.  He explained that naked trees up close could be identified during the winter months when the confusing leaves are gone by their twigs, buds, scars (galls, fungi, leaf stalk’s last growing season, animal damage), and other interesting features (thorns and stipule spines). Our senses are essential when identifying tree species.  We can tell a lot through what we see but tree identification can also rely on taste (cherry with an intense bitter almond flavor), smell (sassafras), feel (bark or seeds), and sound (cucumber tree). 
After allowing us to work to identify our twigs, logs, and fruits/seeds with the help of a winter tree identifier key, Bruce went around to each table to demonstrate various methods to correctly identify the specific tree species.  Bruce entertained us with a “Tree ID from afar” game where it was the class versus THE PLANT MAN.  Even with Thomas keeping score, the class won but only with Bruce’s assistance to identify trees by their sketched silhouettes.


Saturday, February 14, 2015

Programs in March and April


What species is that tree?  Calling all BUDDING arborists... There's more than one way to identify a tree species.  Please join us as Dr. Bruce Gilman demonstrates how to identify tree species when they are without leaves.  This is an indoor presentation at FLCC room C220 beginning at 10:00 AM on Saturday, March 28, 2015

Directions to FLCC C220:  The easiest way to locate room C220 will be to park in the southeast corner of the main parking lot "A" of FLCC.  Walk along Laker Lane on the sidewalk to the east side of the Student Center.  Enter the building at the SECOND (southeast) entrance (building 8) just past the loading dock "C".  Look for signs at the southeast corner of the parking lot and near the blue light to turn to enter the building.


On Friday, April 17, 2015 we will get together at 6:00 PM to enjoy our annual potluck dinner and meeting followed by Steve Lewandowski's Frozen Lake presentation.

Meet at Saint John's Episcopal Church, 183 North Main Street, Canandaigua (enter through Saint John's Court off Howell Street).  Bring a dish to pass and place settings for yourself and any friends that you invite along.  At 7:00 PM Steve Lewandowski will share his insights about Canandaigua Lake Frozen in History.

Our 2015-16 Canandaigua Botanical Society printed programs will be available this evening for an annual membership fee of $7 ($10/family) 

Please email any questions to Laura at:


A note from February:   As I was working on ideas for our 2015-16 program, I encountered a flyer at the Wood Library advertising this Cornell Cooperative Extension program:

Invasive Species Public Workshop
Wednesday February 25, 2015 6:00 pm -8:00 pm Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ontario County 480 North Main Street, Canandaigua, NY

A public workshop on invasive species will be hosted by Cornell Cooperative Extension, the Finger Lakes Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management, and the Canandaigua Lake Watershed Association.

Invasive species such as giant hogweed and hydrilla are causing harm to ecosystems, the economy, and human health in the Finger Lakes region. Learn how to identify, report and manage these damaging species. The workshop will focus in particular on the invasive forest pest hemlock wooly adelgid, which was recently confirmed in the Canandaigua Lake watershed.

Fee: No charge

To Register: contact Emily or 315-536-5123 x 4127.  

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Canandaigua Botanical Society Powerpoint

A Power Point about the Canandaigua Botanical Society was put together for the Canandaigua Rotary in 2014.  This is similar information presented to the Rotary group:

Celebrating 140 Years in 2014 
Dedicated to advancing
knowledge and enjoyment
of plants found in the
Finger Lakes Region since 1874

The Canandaigua Botanical Society is the second oldest botanical society in continuous existence in the United States, dating back to 1874.  The early group was composed of avid botanists who sought out and studied all types of plants growing in the local area. An extensive collection of pressed specimens was prepared by the club, many of which are currently housed in the Finger Lakes Herbarium at Finger Lakes Community College. 

 The oldest known botanical society is:
The Torrey Botanical Society near NYC, was inspired by Columbia College Professor John Torrey in 1867. 

1874-1930: Dr. Harvey Jewett was the Canandaigua Botanical Society’s first president. Members were voted in and papers were read at monthly meetings held in private homes. Mrs. Charles W Marshall served as secretary from 1876-1909 when she met her tragic death in a house fire (along with 35 years of CBS records).
1930-1950: Members were serious botanists, many of them teachers or retired teachers. Specimens were collected for study. During the World War II years gas rationing curtailed the gatherings, but they resumed full force after the war. Field trips were made in the spring, summer, and fall months and meetings were held in the winter.
1950-1980: Membership opens up to “any interested person”. The pattern of winter meetings and summer field trips continued on with an annual meeting and potluck dinner held each April. Specimens continue to be collected. The 100th Anniversary was celebrated in April 1974 at the United Church which was written about in the May 3, 1974 edition of the Daily Messenger.
1980-2009: Membership remains open to all interested people. Field trips continue within Ontario County but also reach further to areas of botanical interest throughout the greater Finger Lakes Region. Specimen collection is limited due to DEC regulation of protected plants. Faculty of the FLCC Environmental Conservation and Horticulture department become an integral part of the Canandaigua Botanical Societyproviding leaders and expertise as well as housing the herbarium of specimens collected by members.
  Since 2009: Canandaigua Botanical Society online 
April: Annual potluck dinner / presentation / meeting  
(dues collected and programs handed out)    
Dues are $7 individual and $10 family/year
Our events are open ~ free to everyone 
Dues buys you a printed program and membership listing
May-October: One or two field trips each month 
November and March: indoor meetings (FLCC) 
  Today the society is made up of individuals who, while having a wide range of knowledge from novice to expert, share a love of nature. Interests include wildflowers, medicinal and edible plants, trees, ferns, mushrooms, water vegetation, viticulture, insects, birds, and more. Many of our members are active in related nature and conservation oriented organizations. Members enjoy leisurely paced walks which allow time to see what is underfoot, overhead, and all around us when we really look. 
   native / non-native 
invasive / non-invasive 
 The Canandaigua Botanical Society offers:
Wealth of information from leaders and others
Opportunity for learning (Just 1 thing)
Great antidote to Nature-Deficit Disorder *
Events open to everyone
* Richard Louv’s: Last Child in the Woods: 
Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder

 Lagoon Park Restoration
Lagoon Park is a wildlife preserve of 34 acres of wetlands on Lakeshore Drive with walking paths, bridges, fishing platforms and other attractions.  2010 Tour of Lagoon Park with Dave DeMallie who talked about the native and invasive plant species. Jim Engel presented a proposal to the City of Canandaigua to have invasive plants removed from this forever wild flood plane and protected wetland. Due to funding shortages the project had not yet commenced.  2012 Jim Engel began restoring the park by removing invasive growth, primarily buckthorn. Canandaigua Botanical Society paired with the Canandaigua Lake Watershed Association to raise funds for the project.  2013 Jim Engel continued to remove invasive species. A Lagoon Park Restoration workday involved folks from FLCC, Canandaigua City, CLWA, and the Botanical Society to plant native species of trees, shrubs and plants. Scouts help afterwards with caging in young trees. CLWA, CNB, and Botanical Society efforts continued to provide funds.  2014 CBS toured Lagoon Park with Jim Engel. There is still buckthorn to be removed and plans are in place for a kiosk and benches to be added.

Looking at a medium buckthorn that had not been taken down yet


photo of a bald eagle taken by Karen Sorce at Lagoon Park summer 2014

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Events to look forward to:

We are currently working on our 2015-16 program.  

Please save MOTHER'S DAY, Sunday, May 10, 2015 on your calendar.  We are planning to spend the afternoon (1-3 pm) at Mertensia Park enjoying the Bluebells with a PLEIN AIR event.  Kids of all ages are encouraged to come and paint bluebells for their moms. We will provide the paints, paper, and brushes.  We'll also try to gather as many easels as we can find. 

Have you heard about the Woodland Gardens of Lou Bliss?  Save the date of Saturday, June 20th if you'd like to see  and enjoy them.

Also confirmed but without dates just yet:
Lagoon Park Kiosk Dedication
Tour of the new FLCC Viticulture Center
Wander through the medicinal plant trail at Ganondagan
Honeybee Apiary
Birds of Prey Presentation at Wild Wings
New Ontario Pathways bridge in Flint
Grims Glen in Naples

Monday, February 2, 2015

Planning for our 141st year!

We are in the process of planning 
events for the 2015-16 
Canandaigua Botanical Society Program.

But first do remember our two remaining events from our 140th Anniversary year:

   Saturday, March 28, 2015: 
Naked Tree Identification with Bruce Gilman 
at FLCC room C220 at 10 AM
Friday, April 17, 2015: 
Annual Potluck Dinner and Frozen Lake 
Presentation by Steve Lewandowski. 
This is the evening that our 2015-16 
printed program will be available.

Ideas for our 141st program include:
Plein Air Bluebell painting
Lagoon Park Kiosk dedication
The NEW FLCC Viticulture Center 
Medicinal/Edible Botanical walk at Ganondagan
Wild Wings visit to learn about predatory birds
Forest Garden tour

Please let us know what we are missing - what would you like to know more about or where would you like to visit?