Botany Alberta 2020
Saturday, August 1 and Sunday, August 2, 2020
ANPC is excited for another year of Botany Alberta! Below you will find two events for August. Included is a list of suggested things to bring. We do have a waiver for everyone to sign before we head out each day.
Register for meeting times and places by emailing: BotanyAB@anpc.ab.ca Please indicate the day(s) you will be attending.
COVID-19 PRECAUTIONS: We will follow all of the AHS guidelines appropriate for small groups. Physical distancing will be encouraged. Please bring hand sanitizer for personal use and face mask if desired.
Bunchberry Meadows Conservation Area in Parkland County, is located approx. 30 km southwest of central Edmonton on vegetated sand dunes that are part of the Devon Dune formation. Open meadows (once grazed) and dry and moist forests occupy the slopes of this undulating terrain, and wetlands, including tamarack wetlands, lie in the hollows. This variety of habitats makes for an interesting flora. The site is owned and managed jointly by the local branch of the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Edmonton and Area Land Trust.
Bunchberry Meadows boasts an excellent trail system taking in all the different types of habitat. Pit toilets and picnic tables are available adjacent to the parking lot. Close to the parking lot there is an excellent opportunity to view some of the reclamation efforts that are being carried out, and to discuss management. If the weather continues wet, exploration of any of the wetlands may require rubber boots.
See their website here.
Nisku Prairie is approximately 28km south of Edmonton and is part of a municipal reserve protecting a 9.3 ha aspen parkland remnant with expanses of grassland with native species. It is one of the Alberta Native Plant Council’s three stewardship sites, and is managed in conjunction with Leduc County. The area is known for its patches of plains rough fescue (in flower this year), three-flowered avens, prairie crocus and other grasses and forbs, as well as the relatively rare Canada ricegrass. Unfortunately, it also has a large component of non-natives. We can discuss the management efforts that have been ongoing for several years and we may even do a little transplanting if conditions are right. (Tools will be provided.)
There are no facilities on site, but garages and fast-food outlets are located at the junction of Hwy 2 and S.H. 625, about a 10-minute drive away.
Since there is no car park on site, parking is along the road or the shoulder west of the ditch. Car-pooling is encouraged.
Dates, Times and Locations:
Saturday, August 1st, we will be meeting at Bunchberry at 10am and aiming to finish in the late afternoon. Please make sure you bring a lunch and lots of water on both days.
Sunday, August 2nd, we will be meeting at Nisku Prairie at 10am. Please be advised there are no facilities except at Nisku, on the corner of Hwy 2 and 625 or in Beaumont, a few km to the east and north.
Directions to Bunchberry Meadows:
The Conservation Area is best accessed from the Devon Highway, Hwy 60, both for travellers coming from the north and Edmonton, and for those coming from Devon. From Hwy 60 off Highway 60 (first set of lights when coming from Devon) take Secondary Road 627 east and drive to Range Road 261 or Hemmingway Road. Turn south on this road and drive for approx. 6 km to Bunchberry Meadows driveway on your right (west). (Drive slowly the last km or so, as the sign indicating the area faces south and is easily missed coming from the north.) There is a short drive from the entrance to the parking lot. Bunchberry can also be accessed on RR 261 from the south – check Google Earth for details.
Directions to Nisku Prairie from Edmonton:
– drive south on Highway 2 (Calgary Trail)
– exit onto the first turnoff for Nisku Industrial park, Secondary Highway 625 (exit before the airport exit)
– Turn left (east) on Secondary 625 / Twp Rd 504 (this is also the road to Beaumont).
– Travel east through Nisku Industrial Park; and continue across a wide, shallow valley (Blackmud Creek)
– On the hill on the other side move into a right-turning lane with a sign that indicates “Vistas South”; and turn right into the subdivision.
– Travel south for about 0.8 km and look for Nisku Prairie on the right side of the road. It issigned behind a red steel entrance gate.
– Park on the shoulder of the road or on the shoulder of land close to the gate.
Car pooling to Nisku Prairie is advised, due to the limited parking opportunities.
Devon has a hotel called the Key West Inn, and there are tons of hotels and motels in Edmonton which is about a 35minute drive away.
Camping is available at Devon Lions Campground which is close to Bunchberry Meadows and is $31/night. Reservations can be made at http://devonlionscampground.activenuketoo.com/CampingRates.aspx
What to Bring:
Bring your backpack and personal field gear
· weather appropriate clothing
· sturdy boots
· first aid kit
· bug spray & sunscreen
· Lunch, snacks and extra water
· plant ID gear, hand lens, plant field guide
· Hand sanitizer/face mask
Be sure to bring lunch and enough snacks and water for a full day (Saturday) or 1/2 day (Sunday). If you are camping please make sure you bring everything needed.