Meetings of the Tucson Chapter

Location for Chapter Meetings

Our chapter holds meetings between September and May each year, with a summer break.  As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, our meetings in 2020-2021 will be conducted via Zoom.  We will continue to meet on the second Thursday of each month at 7:00 pm.  Mailing list members will receive a Zoom link the week before the meeting.  If you are not on our mailing list and wish to attend one of our meetings on Zoom, email us at NativePlantsTucson@gmail.com to request the Zoom link.  Videos of past meetings can be found on our YouTube channel.

Tucson Chapter Meeting

The view from Atascosa Lookout

Thursday, January 14, 2021 at 7:00 pm via Zoom

Floral Treasures of the Atascosa Highlands

Presented by

Jack Dash

Jack Dash in Field Mode

The Atascosa Highlands are an area of incredible biological and cultural diversity. These mountains are at the crossroads of several ecological zones, and harbor a unique flora. Despite being a smaller sky island range in terms of elevation, abundant micro-climates create habitat for species representative of temperate, tropical, and arid regions of North America .

The hills and valleys which make up the Tumacacori EMA of the “Coronado National Forest” have been inhabited and utilized by humans for thousands of years, but over the last few centuries human activity has had a profound impact on the landscape. This presentation will address the climactic, biogeographical, and historical factors which have influenced the modern ecology of the Atascosa Highlands.

Jack will highlight plant species characteristic of the biomes of the Atascosa Highlands, as well as unusual or rare plants he has found in the area.

Jack Dash is a horticulturalist at Desert Survivors Native Plant Nursery in Tucson, and Vice President of the Tucson Chapter of the Arizona Native Plant Society. He is passionate about the flora and ecology of the Sky Islands of Southern Arizona, and their relationships to the broader ecologies of North America.



Join Our Chapter E-list:  If you would like to receive reminders and announcements about field trips and meetings via e-mail, send a note to Lyn Loveless to be added to the list. Stay informed by joining us on Facebook.

Usually the most up-to-date information about upcoming chapter events can be found on our Facebook page.


Sonoran Desert Plants: Seasonal Flowering Schedules – Based on 20 years of data from 1966-1985 by William G. McGinnies

Chapter Leadership

Name Role Contact
Lyn Loveless President lyndloveless@gmail.com
Jack Dash Vice President pjdash23@gmail.com
Jackie Taylor Treasurer jackieot@cox.net

Volunteering Opportunities

Want to get involved? We've got just the thing!

Do you like native plants?

Caring for agave and baby cacti? Consider volunteer opportunities at the Pima County Native Plant Nursery! Located at 5845 N. Camino de la Tierra, the Pima County Native Plant Nursery grows native plants for public projects and is looking for volunteers to help with weeding, watering and propagation. The nursery is open Monday to Friday 7:00am to 3:30 pm. Email Andrew.Hatch@pima.gov for available times/days and details. Plant salvage at Cortaro Farms from Camino Del Oeste to Thornydate prior to road improvement project.


Chapter News

Floristic survey of Rio Vista Natural Resource Park in Tucson

Posted on Oct 04, 2020

John Scheuring and Gay Gilbert on a plant survey. Identifying plants without leaves, flowers or fruit is challenging!

In June 2020, the Tucson Chapter of AZNPS took on an important new project: to create a plant list for the Rio Vista Natural Resource Park in midtown Tucson.  The Rio Vista Conservation Project, in collaboration with the City of Tucson Department of Parks and Recreation, approached the Tucson Chapter to ask for help.  The Rio Vista Conservation Project attempts to identify and solve problems that might threaten the park’s integrity, and works to develop a long-term conservation plan that will guide the park in managing its resources effectively.   They wanted an up-to-date survey of the vegetation and plant species diversity in the Park to inform their ongoing conservation goals.

Despite the challenges of working on this project during the pandemic while maintaining social distancing and protecting public health, Tucson chapter members Suzie Husband and Melanie Campbell-Carter took the lead in organizing the plant census project and maintaining the collective records of plant surveys.  Eleven volunteers made 23 visits to the park in June and July, surveying and documenting the plants then present. Even in this drier-and-hotter-than-ever-before summer, 74 plant species were identified.  Click here for a link to the Rio Vista Natural Resource Park Dry Summer Plant List.

Because many plants in Arizona show strong seasonality, the group plans to continue the plant surveys throughout the seasons, with the next one scheduled for the end of September and into October, 2020.  They also welcome more volunteers who might want to participate in  this important project.  This is a wonderful opportunity for interested citizens to increase their knowledge and to hobnob with other plant experts.   If this piques your interest and you would like to volunteer or find out more, send an email to: plantsurvey2020@gmail.com. Melanie Campbell-Carter and Suzie Husband will be glad to respond to your questions.


Frank Rose “Retires”

Posted on Aug 03, 2019

The  plant walk in the Catalinas on Thursday, August 1, was a little different. Frank Rose, the long-time leader has decided to slow down, and to a lot of his friends and followers that means this was the last plant walk he will lead as a “regular”.  It was a cloudy and cool day, and botanizers saw a nice variety of blooms, including Thalictrum fendleri and Salvia arizonica. Lots of great food was eaten afterward.

Frank has been a singularly powerful  advocate for native plants.  Arizona Native Plant Society,  his friends, his fans, and his followers have all been extremely grateful for his powerful leadership in putting nature’s bounty at the forefront of our lives.

Frank, may all your future plant walks be as sweet.

Sabino Springs Homeowners Association: Walking the Walk on Invasive Grasses

Posted on Jul 27, 2019

The Conservation Task Force of the Sabino Springs HOA began consulting with Arizona National Golf Club in 2016 to determine the best ways to manage the invasive plants in their community and throughout the Golf Course. When the Sabino Springs HOA signed a lease to operate the Golf Course mid-2018, Dr. John Scheuring, Conservation Director of Arizona Native Plant Society, toured the course with Golf Course Superintendent Rick Darby to consult and advise an action plan to start control and eradication of a rapidly growing populations of buffelgrass and fountain grass. With all the needed Course improvements the recommended plan exceeded the scope of work that had already been scheduled on the Golf Course. The results are a textbook example of how to manage buffelgrass and fountain grass. Dr. Scheuring toured the Course again in June 2019 and was thoroughly pleased with the results of progress made by the Golf Course Maintenance Staff’s dedicated efforts. He noted “The results will become a best practice example to other Golf Courses and park areas throughout the Tucson Metropolitan area”.

Rick Darby,  Superintendent of Arizona National Golf Course


See what your chapter has been up to!