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Sea Rocket Chapter
Florida Native Plant Society

444 Columbia Blvd, Titusville, FL 32780
321-264-5185

        Environmentally Endangered Lands Program logo
President
Lois Harris
lois6459@att.net

Vice President
Armand De Flippo
armanddf@rcn.com

MEETINGS

Monthly Sea Rocket Meeting moving to November 19th. This is Saturday at 2:00 pm. We do this each November to accommodate the Thanksgiving Holidays. Sea Rocket will be joining the Friends of Enchanted Forest Sanctuary that evening. The guest speaker will be David Sime, president of the Photography Club. He will be displaying photos taken at the Enchanted Forest.

Sea Rocket's monthly meetings are held at The Enchanted Forest Sanctuary, 444 Columbia Blvd, Titusville, FL 32780. Phone: 321-264-5185

Sea Rocket monthly meetings are held on the fourth Wednesday of each month at 7:00pm. Please email Lois Harris at lois6459@att.net for meeting information:.

All Sea Rocket meetings and activities are FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

Sea Rocket Chapter serves north and central Brevard County from Scottsmoor to Rockledge and east to Merritt Island, Cape Canaveral and Cocoa Beach.

REMINDER! The Sea Rocket Chapter does not meet in July and August; full programs resume in September.

MISSION

The purpose of the Florida Native Plant Society ~ Sea Rocket Chapter is to promote the preservation, conservation, and restoration of the native plants and native plant communities of Florida, primarily through education and community outreach.

Monthly guest speakers provide programs on a variety of topics relevant to the mission of the Sea Rocket Chapter. Please view the current Sea Rocket newsletter for program information.

Monthly field trips to conservation lands in central Florida are FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. View upcoming field trip information in the current Sea Rocket newsletter.

Sea Rocket Chapter volunteers maintain a native plant nursery and sell plants to the public at events throughout the year; for information on volunteer work email Lois Harris at lois6459@att.net.


Recent improvements to our nursery


Date Line 11-11-16
Whew! The prototype water table has been completed. The table stands about 4 ft. high. It is 4 ft wide by 8 ft long, and 1 inch deep. The 1 inch is the allowed water level that will keep the plants moist. Why water from the bottom? The ground water we use at the nursery is full of iron. When we water the plants the iron deposits coat the leaves, cutting out the sun, thus killing the plants. By watering from the bottom the leaves will not get coated with iron oxide, and the plants will hopefully thrive. This table is a prototype to test the feasibility of following on with this method. The table is level within reason, the plastic is solid, and the plants are drinking, as required.

Our new


Today, 11-10-16, I saw "Nursery Nan" back in her burrow. I call her "Nan" because I've been told she is a girl tort. She was gone for a couple months but thankfully has returned.

Nursery Nan


11/16 - A recent addition to our Nursery is the "Water table". The reason for this table is because of the ground water quality we use to water our plants. Originally our water quality was poor at 3600 ppm salt. Many of our plants could not tolerate this level of salinity. The Board decided to sink another well, about 60 feet for salt free water. We did, and we got salt free water, BUT it was loaded with iron. O.K, I thought, not a problem. Not so, heavy iron content as we have is a problem. It coats the leaves of our plants with iron stain and cuts off the sun from their photosynthesis factories. No photosynthesis, no life. We were losing our plants to an artificial night. The object with this table is to have the plants sitting in water, maybe one inch layer of it. No water will coat the leaves. But will water from beneath

Sea Rocket's water table.


4/16 - The temperatures can get pretty high in the greenhouse, which is not good for the young and tender sprouts and rehabilitating plants the greenhouse is expected to house. We had shade cloth for over a year, but it too succumbed to the brutal Florida sun. Nothing we did seemed to tame the brutal heat built up in this structure. Sea Rocket abandoned use of the greenhouse idea. Eventually the County sold it and put in a storage building.



The Sea Rocket Chapter display and native plant sales at Earth Day Family Fun Festivals in Titusville's Enchanted Forest Nature Sanctuary.
Click on the picture to see enlargements.


UPCOMING EVENTS
& THINGS TO DO

Note: All future plans can change presently. If in doubt, verify the date and times are accurate. Page numbers below refer to the newsletter.
Every
Saturday
GUIDED NATURE HIKES - 10:00am - the Enchanted Forest Sanctuary. Bring hat, water and walking shoes. Groups of 5 or more, please RSVP. For more information, please call 321-264-5185.
Every
Wednesday
FNPS Sea Rocket Chapter Nursery Workday — 9am-12noon, email Lois at lois6459@att.net for further info and schedule.
January 4 FTA Hike - Cruickshank Loop Trail—Meet at West entrance of Lowe's park-ing lot at I-95 and Hwy 50 in Titusville at 8:30 am. $5.00 per car or $15.00 yearly entry fee
January 7 Special EFS Garden Work Day from 9:30 till...This workday is intended for spreading pine straw throughout the garden areas. Volunteers needed.
January 11 FTA Hike - Tosohatchee Loop Trail - meet at Lone Cabbage Fish Camp on Hwy 520 and the St. Johns River at 8:30 am. $3.00 per car entry fee applies.
January 18 FTA Hike - Doris Leeper Trail. Meet at West entrance of Lowe's parking lot at I-95 and Hwy 50 in Titusville at 8:30 am.
January 18 EF's "Lunch with Nature series", Backyard Beekeeping, from 12:00 to 1:00 pm. Bring your lunch and enjoy an Informative talk about backyard bee-keeping techniques with Clifton Best, President of the Backyard Beekeepers Association! No registration required.
January 20 In celebration of Florida Arbor Day Titusville will be celebrating the 125th Titusville Anniversary Tree. Ceremonies begin at 3:30pm. See page 7 for more.
January 21 Helen and Allan Cruickshank Sanctuary Field Trip 0900 to 1200 with Dr. Schmalzer. See page 7 for complete information.
January 25 FTA Hike - Tosohatchee South. Meet at Lone Cabbage Fish Camp on Hwy 520 and the St. Johns River at 8:30 am.
January 25 Sea Rocket General meeting with Tom Shupe, of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWCC) on Coyotes Spoke at our May 25 2016 meeting on Bears. This time he will be speaking on coyotes.
January
25 thru 30
Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival at the Eastern Florida State College, in Titusville (North Campus). Sea Rocket with be here on Saturday the 28th for an outreach opportunity. Not a plant sale.
January 28 Sea Rocket will set up a booth at the Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival. This is a one day only outreach, and not a native plant sale.

February
21 thru 26
Mexico Migration of the Monarch Butterflies. This trip takes you on a guided tour into the middle of one of nature's most amazing phenomena, the migration of the monarchs. Trip planning by Banner Tours & Travel, LLC. For full information and travel package contact Bannertoursandtravel@gmail.com or call (603) 785-2088
May 18 The Florida Native Plant Society 2017 Conference, "CONNECTIONS" , 2017 Save the Date and Reserve Lodging Now!

Please send calendar items to David Humphrey at brevcracker@gmail.com
For a comprehensive view of Sea Rocket activities go to www.FNPS.org; events, "searocket".



Volunteers are needed all the time to keep the nursery and gardens in top shape. If you think you'd like to be involved, but are new to native plants, no problem! I volunteered with zero knowledge of native plants and have been taught by the best about native plants and how to grow them. If you are interested there are opportunities to learn and be a part helping Florida regain many of it's vanishing plants.

Volunteer opportunities exist for plant sales, or working the nursery, or helping to maintain the various butterfly gardens around the building.. Volunteering is a great chance to learn from the best, and meet and work with master gardeners, and experts in botany, and native plants, .


Current Program! - Ongoing

As explained in the attached PDF, Dr. Teresa Cooper is asking for some help with supplies. She will be speaking at the Sea Rocket June meeting (6-24) about this project. If you can help in any way contact Martha at tigerlily1953@aol.com or myself at brevcracker@gmail.com and we'll get it to Dr. Cooper. -- David Humphrey

Dr. Teresa Cooper is currently conducting research in the Enchanted Forest for the species Tillandsia utriculata.
Webmaster: Tillandsia utriculata, commonly known as the spreading airplant, is a species of bromeliad that is native to Florida and Georgia in the United States.


Our gardens in the Enchanted Forest
Nature Sanctuary.

Sea Rocket greenhouse in the Enchanted Forest Sanctuary. Inside our Enchanted Forest Sanctuary greenhouse.
Our gardening plot in the Enchanted Forest Sanctuary. Some seedlings in our gardening plot in the Enchanted Forest Sanctuary.


Sea Rocket Chapter Completes Keep Brevard Beautiful Xeriscape Garden

The Sea Rocket Chapter has completed an 800 square foot pollinator garden at Chain-of-Lakes Recreation Area in north Titusville. Keep Brevard Beautiful awarded the Sea Rocket Chapter a Xeriscape Grant earlier this year to help offset some of the costs associated with the garden.

Sea Rocket's contribution to the project exceeded $1,800 in value and included over 140 hours of donated labor and nearly $500 in plant material. Volunteers planted 150 native plants representing 20 species, many of which are butterfly larval host plants.

The two halves of the garden are split by a hardened trail, making it easy for visitors to view the many native pollinator species which visit the plants, including several species of butterflies, moths, and dragonflies.

Chain-of-Lakes Recreation Area is located at 1614 Snowy Egret Drive. Contact Brevard County Parks & Recreation at 321-264-5105 for more information.

East Bed Completed West Bed Completed
Click for Gallery of Enlargements

Eileen Szuchy's "A Sampling of Native Edible Plants of the Central Florida Region"
Dr. Paul Schmalzer's "Scrub Habitat"
Dr. Paul Schmalzer's "Woodland Habitat"

The Florida Native Plant Society

UFL Florida - Landscaping for Wildlife

2001