Over the years the Pinellas Chapter has carried out numerous local projects in support of the FNPS mission to preserve, conserve, and restore the native plants and native plant communities of Florida. Funding for these projects comes from our membership dues and fundraising efforts, with occasional support from our state organization.
Below is a summation of our most recent projects:
Moccasin Lake Nature Park Butterfly Garden – 2008 - Current
This native garden is just outside the classroom building at Moccasin Lake Nature Park, and is an excellent opportunity to educate the public about native plants, as thousands of people visit the park each year. It includes plant species that provide nectar for adult butterflies and larval food for their caterpillars. Chapter volunteers maintain the garden through selective planting of native butterfly plants, and monthly pruning and weeding workdays. In 2019 the Nature Park underwent a major renovation by the City of Clearwater, which included the butterfly garden. At that time many non-native species were planted. In 2020 the Pinellas Chapter funded a project, led by Nicole Schmidt Jones, to restore the garden to primarily native butterfly plants.
Volunteer workdays in the garden, usually held on the 3rd Saturday of the month from 9:00 am – 11:00 am, are a great way to learn which plants attract butterflies and pollinators to your yard, and how to plant and maintain them. View our calendar for upcoming workdays and email RSVP@pinellasnativeplants.org to sign-up.
Neighborhood Home Solutions/Bartlett Park Native Plant Demonstration Garden and Homeowner Education Project – 2018 – 2019
Volunteers from the PCFNPS worked with Neighborhood Home Solutions and the Bartlett Park Neighborhood Association to install a sustainable native plant demonstration garden and signage in landscape beds around the entrances of the Resource Center, to be maintained by the community.
Following the installation of the garden, PCFNPS and Pinellas County Extension Service prepared a 20 minute curriculum on Florida Friendly sustainable landscape practices, utilizing Florida Native Plants to be incorporated into the pre-purchase homeowner education provided to 600 clients over a 12 month period. Each client received printed materials, and water saving devices provided by the City of St. Petersburg.
Volunteers from the PCFNPS presented 2 workshops, on Florida Native and Florida Friendly sustainable landscape practices, in the community room of the Resource Center to clients who have qualified to receive financial assistance, and to residents of Bartlett Park. The workshops presented Florida Friendly sustainable landscape practices, utilizing Florida Native Plants. Participants received printed materials and water saving devices.
The Narrows Community Garden, Vegetable and Native Plant Demonstration Plot - 2018 – 2019
The Narrows Community Garden is located at McGough Nature Center, 11901 146th St N, Largo, FL 33774. Thousands of people visit the park each year, and participate in the community garden program. In 2018, chapter volunteer Stefan Babjack created a demonstration garden to show people how native plants can be combined seamlessly and beautifully with edible herbs and vegetables. The result is a thriving garden and a small ecosystem friendly to native animals, at the same time decreasing the need for pesticides with the increase of insect biodiversity.