Southeastern Chapter of the MBC

Do you wish to join the Southeastern Chapter of the Michigan Botanical Club? Then click here to access the membership form.



Meet at the Visitor Center/Spicer House, Heritage Park, Farmington Hills, MI.

24915 Farmington Rd, Farmington Hills, MI 48336  

Programs at 2:00 p.m. (Potluck at 1:00p.m. February meeting only.)




2017-2018 indoor programs:

October 1   Dorothy McLeer U of M-Dearborn presentation on Spiders

November 5   Carol Clements Wayne County Naturalist will present on Ferns.

December 3   Michael Kost Natural Communities of Michigan

February 4

March 4   Julie Crick "Eyes on the Forest" project

April 8


October 1

"Step Into My Parlor"

Join Dorothy McLeer, Program Coordinator at the University of Michigan-Dearborn Environmental Interpretive Center, and be captured in a web of amazement learning about the lives of spiders.  These fiber artists, who share our gardens--and our homes--are hard at work catching things we don't want in either location with their silken snares.  Weather permitting, we will walk the grounds to look for these "pest managers" in action!

November 5

Ferns of Southeast Michigan - Carol Clements,

Carol is the Naturalist for Wayne County Parks and Manager of Nankin Mills Interpretive Center in Westland.  Michigan is home to over 70 species of ferns, with over 40 species in our area.  Some are easy to recognize and others are more difficult to tell apart. This program will focus on some of the unique characteristics that will help you distinguish these botanical treasures.

December 3

Surveying the Natural Communities of Michigan

Michael Kost, Curator of Native Plants, Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum, University of Michigan. Michael is an author ofA Field Guide to the Natural Communities of Michigan (2014).  Prior to joining U-M, he served as the Lead Ecologist and a Senior Conservation Scientist for Michigan Natural Features Inventory at Michigan State University where he worked to study, document, and provide guidance on biodiversity conservation.

The natural communities of Michigan span the full range of environmental gradients from dry, droughty sand prairies and open dunes to rich conifer swamps and floodplain forests. We will explore the factors that structure the distribution of this diverse assemblage of natural communities across the state. You’ll come away with a renewed appreciation for the natural beautiful of Michigan and a framework for better understanding the diversity of ecosystems we observe in nature.






2017 Field Trips

Saturday June 10

“Field Tour of the Shiawassee Basin Preserve” 10am-12pm at Shiawassee Basin Preserve. Meet at 8731 Eaton Rd, Davisburg, MI

The Shiawassee Basin Preserve is a 514 acre township park located in Springfield Township, just north of Davisburg. Notably, this preserve helps protect one of the largest and highest quality prairie fen complexes in the Midwest. Numerous rare plants and animals can be found at the preserve, including the largest remaining population of Poweshiek skipperling, a federally endangered prairie butterfly. Tour participants will explore some of the interesting features of this park including the response of plant communities to various management techniques. In early June, we can expect to observe many plants typical of prairie fens in the early growing season, potentially including several species of orchids that are associated with prairie fen wetlands. Participants should bring sturdy hiking boots, preferably waterproof, with sufficient ankle protection and support to guard against cut stumps and uneven terrain. Also, insect repellant clothing or spray, sunscreen and a water bottle are advised. This field tour is rated as low-medium difficulty due to anticipated length of hiking loop (1.5 miles), varying terrain and potentially uneven footing in the prairie fen.

Lake Erie Metropark

August 5    Saturday, 2:00 - 4:00 pm

It’s time for another trip to see the beautiful North American Lotus, Nelumbo lutea, in bloom at Lake Erie Metropark and many other late summer plants along the wetland trail and boardwalk. Lake Erie Metropark is located in Brownstown Township, near Gibraltar. Take I-75 south to the Gibraltar exit. Turn left (east) on Gibraltar Road. When you reach Jefferson, turn right (south) until you reach the park entrance. There will be a $10.00 charge per vehicle to enter the park unless you have a Metroparks pass. The Michigan Recreation Passport (purchased with your license plate) does not work at the Metroparks. Meet at the Marshlands Museum and Nature Center. We will hike the Cherry Island Trail which is 1.25 miles of flat paved trail and boardwalk. For more information about Lake Erie Metropark see

Palmer Park Detroit   Leader, Bill Brodovich

Saturday,  August 19 10:00am. Meet at the Splash Pad parking lot in the center of the park.

From 6 Mile/Woodward, you will need to go up almost to the next light and do a Michigan turn-around in order to turn onto Merrill Plaisance from Woodward to go into the park. On Merrill Plaisance, stay to the right past the first parking lot, past the service drive sign and look to the right, Just at the juncture, when Merrill Plaisance meets Ponchartrain,  you will see a large one story building, the Community House with colorful painted circles. There is a large parking lot there.  Meet by the Community House.

Palmer Park is on the east side of Woodward Avenue between McNichols and Seven Mile Rd.

“…Although surrounded by urban areas, even to the untrained observer, these parks [Palmer, Pitcher and Balduck} show an impressive quality and quantity of plants species.

Since so little is left of the natural vegetation of the Detroit area, especially in large tracks, these three parks remain as some of the last outposts of what used to be vast tracts of forest that grew on the fertile lake bottom...” Weatherbee's Botanical Surveys 2004.




Everyone knows about the Monarch Butterfly and its need for milkweed plants in order to survive. But many other insects and some non-insects also make their home in the Milkweed community. This program looks at the many organisms which feed on and among the different species of milkweeds, and those that make passing visits. Presented by Don Drife, independent naturalist and blogger (

November 6, 2016

The Unique Flora and Habitats of the Huron-Clinton Metroparks

The Huron-Clinton Metroparks consist of 13 parks in five Souteast Michigan Counties with a total acreage just under 25,000 acres.  The park system covers the Jackson Interlobate Region and the Maumee Lake Plain.  Due to these diverse parent materials the Metroparks is home to many unique species, species assemblages, and the habitats that support them.  In some cases, the Metroparks are home to species that have only one or two occurrences elsewhere in the state of Michigan.  Ryan Colliton, Natural Resources Coordinator for the Huron-Clinton Metroparks, will discuss the unique species and their habitats.  He will also discuss management strategies that are used to promote these species.  This includes activities such as prescribed fire, invasive species control, and population monitoring.


December 4, 2016

Genevieve Gillette: First Lady of State Parks
by Lawrence Falardeau of the Friends of Highland Recreation Area, Artist and Landscape Architect

Michigan state parks welcomed the newly-mobile drivers of automobiles in the early 1900s. Genevieve Gillette made it her life’s work to preserve precious natural settings and make them available to the travelling public. In 1920 she began her landscape architecture career working in Chicago with noted landscape designer Jens Jensen, whose naturalistic designs included the Edsel Ford estate at Haven Hill.  Over decades, her career supported her enduring volunteer efforts in raising awareness of Michigan’s natural wonders and their value to society. She established important conservation groups, gained funding for Michigan State Parks, even advised President Lyndon Johnson on recreation and nature.


Click here to view a pdf of the interpretive sign.

Click here to view a pdf of the interpretive sign.


February 5, 2017

Modern evolutionary biology, with its ability to directly access the genetic material of plants, has revolutionized our understanding of the evolution of our flora. This has turned up many interesting facets about how plants in our flora are related, but also has exasperated people familiar with the traditional names and arrangements of plants. We will explore the underlying principles behind the re-working of plant relationships, plus look at some of the interesting and sometimes remarkable new facts about plant evolution and relationships.

This will be a video version of Tony’s presentation given to the Huron Valley Chapter of the MBC on Feb. 16, 2016. Tony’s voice is narrating his slide presentation on the screen. Even though he won’t be there in person, his unmatched lecture style shines so you will learn and be entertained at the same time.

Join us for our traditional pot-luck dinner at 1:00 p.m., followed by the program at 2:00 p.m. Bring your own table service. Beverages will be provided.

March 5, 2017

"Natural Areas of Springfield Township:  Interesting Features and Conservation Opportunities” presented by Mike Losey, Natural Resources Manager for Springfield Township

Springfield Township, located in northwest Oakland County, is home to numerous high quality natural areas which are comprised of a diverse array of plants and wildlife.  Attendees will learn about the interesting plants and wildlife found in the township and what efforts are being taken to conserve them.  A companion field tour will be held at the Shiawassee Basin Preserve (located near Davisburg) later in the year.

April 2, 2017

Pollinator Preservation Strategies for the Home Garden: Native Plants and Their Unique Relationships with Beneficial Insects. Want to help out our native pollinators and other beneficial insects? Through plant selection, garden design and maintenance protocols, you can provide a haven not only for our beautiful butterflies and moths but also other critical beneficial species, from bees to beetles.

Presented by Cheryl M. English, Advanced Master Gardener.

Actias luna 2.jpg

Photo credit: Don Schulte Photography.


Meeting Archive


Newsletters - 2010 2009

Southeastern Chapter Officers

PresidentEmily Nietering 313-278-9269

Vice President - Dorothy Holden 248-486-3538

Secretary/TreasurerRuth Hart 313-849-2844

Director at Large - Alice Ward - 248-673-1183

Director at Large - Renee Zimmerman 248-855-0145

Director at Large - John Zimmerman 248-855-0145