Sheila Dunning

Author's details

Name: Sheila Dunning
Date registered: October 13, 2011

Latest posts

  1. Let’s Cool Off — July 23, 2018
  2. “Ice Age” Tree in Peril: Florida Torreya — April 14, 2018
  3. NISAW 2018: It’s Growing So Well It Must Be A Good Plant — March 2, 2018
  4. NISAW 2018: Well Behaved Cultivars That Help With Invasive Issues — March 1, 2018
  5. Florida Master Naturalist Program — January 19, 2018

Author's posts listings

Let’s Cool Off

With more than 250 crystal clear springs in Northwest Florida it is just a short road trip to a pristine swimming hole! Springs and their associated flowing water bodies provide important habitat for wildlife and plants. Just as importantly, springs provide people with recreational activities and the opportunity to connect with the natural environment. While …

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“Ice Age” Tree in Peril: Florida Torreya

Having just completed the Okaloosa/Walton Uplands Master Naturalist course, I would like to share information from the project that was presented by Ann Foley.   The Florida Torreya is the most endangered tree in North America, and perhaps the world! Less than 1% of the historical population survives. Unless something is done soon, it may …

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NISAW 2018: It’s Growing So Well It Must Be A Good Plant

You know that plant in the corner of the yard that seems to be taking over?  It’s the one that your friend “passed along” because they had plenty of them and wanted to share.  After all, it grows so well.  How can you go wrong? The odds are that vigorous plant is a non-native species.  …

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NISAW 2018: Well Behaved Cultivars That Help With Invasive Issues

An invasive plant is defined as a plant that is non-native to the ecosystem under consideration and whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health (National Invasive Species Council, 2001). Research supports the fact that invasive plants damage natural areas, but there is great debate over …

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Florida Master Naturalist Program

The Florida Master Naturalist Program is an adult education University of Florida/IFAS Extension program. Training will benefit persons interested in learning more about Florida’s environment or wishing to increase their knowledge for use in education programs as volunteers, employees, ecotourism guides, and others. Through classroom, field trip, and practical experience, each module provides instruction on the …

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Plant Them High and Water Well

We plant trees with the intention of them being there long after we are gone. However, many trees and shrubs fail before ever reaching maturity.  Often this is due to improper installation and establishment.  Research has shown that there are techniques to improve survivability.  Before digging the hole: Look up. If there is a wire, security …

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Deck the Halls With Boughs of Holly

According to Druid lore, hanging the plant in homes would bring good luck and protection. Holly was considered sacred because it remained green and strong with brightly colored red berries no matter how harsh the winter.  Most other plants would wilt and die. Later, Christians adopted the holly tradition from Druid practices and developed symbolism …

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Monarch Migrations Have Begun

Since we are approaching the peak dates in mid-October, it is time to get your gardens ready for migrating monarchs to fuel up on nectar sources. In their Mexican overwintering sites, these monarchs will have to survive on stored fat all winter. So they need to build up fat reserves by feeding on flowering plants …

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NISAW 2017: Laurel Wilt

Many invasive plants and insects are introduced in packing materials, including 12 species of ambrosia beetles, which embed themselves in wood used as crates and pallets. While these tiny beetles don’t actually feed on wood, the adults and larvae feed on fungi that is inoculated into galleries within the sapwood by the females when they …

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NISAW 2017: Cuban Anole

The brown anole, a lizard native to Cuba and the Bahamas, first appeared in the Florida Keys in 1887. Since then it has moved northward becoming established in nearly every county in Florida. By hitching a ride on boats and cars, as well as, hanging out in landscape plants being shipped throughout the state, the …

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