Norris Whiston on Flower Clusters & Ecology of Common Nova Scotia Trees and Shrubs

An entry under “Elongated Clusters”
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Norris Whiston is a member of the NS Wild Flora Society.

One of Norris’s passions is compiling user-friendly guides to the local flora, which he generously shares with all of us on a page on this website.

Norris’s latest production (2022-08-06) is a guide to Flower Clusters & Ecology of Common Nova Scotia Trees and Shrubs
Continue reading

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Canopy Lichens: Identification and Ecology – Eagle Head Seminar


Instructor: Gary Perlmutter
Dates: July 18th–July 27th, 2022
Times: 7PM–9PM ET

Scheduling Details: July 18, 20, 22, 25, & 27
Tuition Cost: $150 US

Description: This seminar will introduce participants to the learning about lichens growing in the treetops, where habitats and growing conditions are very different than at or near ground level. This seminar will focus on the identification, biology, ecology of the flora of canopy lichens by studying newly fallen trees and fallen branches and twigs. Participants will learn terminology that describes characters of lichens and their lifestyles and how these characters are used to identify lichens. Participants will learn how to collect and prepare specimens so they can build a starter collection of their own. Identification techniques of chemical spot testing and microscopy will also be covered. Ecological topics such as lichen community succession and pollution sensitivity will also be discussed.

Required materials: A hand lens or similar magnifier with 10X magnification or higher (these can be purchased online or at a local hobby store for as little as $6.99). One copy of Keys to Lichens of North America, revised and expanded by Irwin M. Brodo (available at Yale University Press for $29.95 + shipping & handling:

• Full, color flyer for this seminar is available here.

• Participants need to have a Zoom account ( ; sign-up is free). They will receive a secure link to join the seminar before it begins.

• Individual classes will be recorded and made available to stream (not download) for the duration of the seminar by its participants, so they are able to review them or make up missed ones.

Register Here

General Information

Online Calendar

If you have any other questions, feel free to email us at or call us at 207.546.2821 Ext. 4
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Chignecto Botanical Walk, MOVED to Monday, July 4th

Learn more about the natural flora of the Chignecto Isthmus! 

Monday, June 27th,  1:30pm-4:30pm 

Nature Conservancy Canada, in conjunction with the Atlantic Conservation Data Centre, has generously offered to join with us on a field trip in and around some of the NCC wilderness properties on the Chignecto Isthmus. The trip will start in New Brunswick and we will head into Nova Scotia.

This trip was originally scheduled for June 27, but because of conflicts, it has been moved to July 4.

The Chignecto Isthmus is recognized for its importance to wildlife for connectivity between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. It has been identified as a linkage point for the typical movements of plant and animal species as well as critical for northward migration of species in response to climate change.

Rose pogonia – Pogonia ophioglossoides, Photo Bob Kennedy

Join us for an afternoon of learning more about some of the rare plant species that grow in the area. A representative from the ACCDC will be leading the 3km hike and participants will explore forest and wetland habitats and the wide variety of flora and fauna within them.

Habitats visited would be mixed forest (locally wet), maybe some open wetland and pond, and disturbed forest edge. The latter has most of the more interesting species, with a lot of orchids, especially Grass-Pink (Calopogon tuberosus) and Rose Pogonia (Pogonia ophioglossoides). There are some local areas of more calcareous disturbed soils that have uncommon to rare species like Rufous Bulrush (Scirpus pendulus), Loesel’s Twayblade (Liparis loeselii), Dudley’s Rush (Juncus dudleyi), Slender Spikerush (Eleocharis nitida), Variegated Horsetail (Equisetum variegatum), but I’m not sure if we are able to reach them.

Meet just before 1:30 pm at Parson Road, at the corner of NB Highway 16 (45.939880, -64.209108) From there we will carpool to the laneway that takes us to the property, then walk in once the road becomes difficult for smaller cars.

Please contact to register for the trip.

 What to Bring: Water, snacks, close-toed walking shoes, rain gear (just in case!), layers of clothing, bug spray, sunscreen, hat.   

Trail difficulty: Difficulty of the walk would be moderate – old logging roads that are very flat, sometimes fairly shrubby or mucky-wet in places. Rubber boots would be important if you want to stay dry and the mosquitos can be extreme, so long sleeves and pants plus repellent are essential and a hat would be recommended.

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Nature Canada Webinar – Canada’s New Climate Adaption Plan

Register Here

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Upcoming Field Seminar on Liverworts – Eagle Hill

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May 27-29, 2022: Nature NS Celebration of Nature

‘Received from Nature NS: The Celebration of Nature is our big annual event, a talk and hike series as well as our AGM, and it always falls on the last weekend in May. Pre-COVID when the event took place entirely in-person, we would rotate locations around the province and a local NatureNS member group would host the event. This year, we’re running a hybrid event, where the talks and AGM are virtual and the hikes/outings are in-person and take place all around the province.
For further details and to register, follow this link:
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Next Member’s Meeting – Outdoors, Eisner’s Cove Wetland, Dartmouth – May 30

Our next members meeting will NOT be on Zoom, but instead will be live outdoors at Eisner’s Cove wetland. This will be on May 30, which is the FIFTH Monday of the month (usually we meet on the fourth Monday).

Exact time, directions and a map will be posted later.

Rhodora Buds at Eisner’s Cove – Photo Bob Kennedy
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Field trip to Meguma Falls Saturday May 21

This will be an all day trip to see the spring ephemerals and more. Bring field guides cameras, binoculars, loupes, lunch, water and snacks. Dress for the weather including rain, wear waterproof hiking boots or rubber boots. We will go Rain or Shine. (weather forecasts have been changing daily recently).
From Halifax drive to Truro , exit 14A to Onslow; turn right to Onslow Road (NS2) and drive 3.7 km, then Left at the flashing Amber light to Hwy 311, drive to Earltown about 26 Km, then right turn onto Kemptown road. The Gully Lake Wilderness Area Trailhead will be on your left and marked with a large sign. We should arrive by 09:00 hrs. Park on Kemptown Road at the Yellow Birch Trailhead.
We will follow the Fire Road,  to the Sandy Cope trail, to Donald’s Falls, then across the Fire Road to the Gully Lake Wilderness area, and follow the trail ( Willard Kitchner Macdonald trail) to Meguma Falls ( About 8Km in & 16 km round trip. Shorter if you return early). Groomed trails are easy walking, some rough and wet spots, expect spring ephemerals in full bloom.
Limit 15 maximum. Please register with  Charles Cron  by email <> or call 902 477 8272 and leave a message. Name, phone# car Plate # so we can track you and contact you for last minute changes etc. (cell phones may not work in some areas). (Carpool if possible, arrange amongst ourselves).
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Norris Whiston shares his Nature Guides 3May2022

Norris is a member of the NS Wild Flora Society. A retired science teacher, he was very involved in the creation of the Cobequid Eco -Trails Society. “Norris has written over 50 books and brought that passion to the landscapes of Colchester County, to the forests and to the pathways.” – view Hike Nova Scotia post for more about him.

One of Norris’s passions is compiling user-friendly guides to the local flora, which he has generously shared with all of us  – see Norris Whiston Guides (on this website).

Many Thx, Norris

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AGM & Sean Blaney Presentation – Monday Apr. 25, 2022

Epigaea repens (Trailing arbutus) – Photo: Bob Kennedy

Nova Scotia Wild Flora Society Annual General Meeting 

Our 2022 AGM will take place Apr 25 at 7:00pm via Zoom. See the attached agenda.

Following the AGM, Sean Blaney of the Atlantic Canada Conservation Data Centre will make a presentation of their most recent activities documenting the flora of the Maritimes.

If you are a member you should receive an email invitation for the Zoom meeting by Apr 22. If you have not received it, please contact Anne Mills at


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