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Bulletin of the

Native Plant Society of Oregon

Dedicated to the enjoyment, conservation, and study
of Oregon's native vegetation


Volume 32

Number 4

April 1999

ISSN 0884-599

In this issue


Karl Urban Remembered - Jerry Baker 49-50

In Memory of Karl Urban - Esther McEvoy 50

Mill Creek Falls Knapweed Pull - Mike McKeag 51

NPSO Items for Sale 51

What is that flower? 52

Glide Wildflower Show 52

Friends of the Oregon Flora Project 52

State News

July 30 - Aug. 1

Annual Meeting: The Emerald Chapter is hosting the 1999 annual meeting in the high country of McKenzie Pass. Registration material is in this issue; registration deadline is June 15. For pictures/notes of meeting site, check our new web site:

April 17, Sat.

Board Meeting: 10 A.M. - 4 P.M. Brooks Room, Deschutes County Library, 601 NW Wall St., Bend, Oregon. Directions: The Library is the new, large building on the west side of Wall St., just south of the main downtown part of Bend. The meeting room is immediately to the left as you enter the front door.

Chapter News

Blue Mountain

April 5, Mon.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Small Business Development Center, SE 1st & Dorian, Pendleton. Karen Antell, botanist at EOSU in La Grande, will talk on vegetation at Ladd Marsh.

April 24, Sat.

Field Trip: Jerry Baker will lead a trip to see spring flowers. We will go up Cabbage Hill or up the Umatilla River, depending on what's blooming best, and also will include a stop at the native plant nursery on the Umatilla Indian Reservation. Meet: northeast corner, Pendleton Safeway parking lot, 8 A.M.


April 22, Thur.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Carnegie Room, McMinnville Public Library, 225 NW Adams, McMinnville. Business meeting. 7:30 P.M. Loren Russell will present a slide show on Oregon's alpine plants, comparing the alpine vegetation of the high Cascades, the Wallowas and the Steens Mountains.

May 27, Thur.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Carnegie Room, McMinnville Public Library, 225 NW Adams, McMinnville. Business meeting. 7:30 P.M. "Basketry Traditions of Oregon Native Peoples." Ethnobotanist, Peg Mathewson, will present a slide show and demonstration of basketmaking with native plants.


April 12, Mon.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Avery House, Avery Park, Corvallis. Tom Conley talks about landforms and ethnobotany in the pre-Columbian Willamette Valley.

April 10, Sat.

Field Trip: Exploring lichens of old-growth forests of Mary's Peak, Lobaria oregana, pin-lichens and more. Meet: 9 A.M., OSU parking lot, across from the Monroe St. Beanery. Bring lunch. Call Eric Peterson,( policy), for information.

Emerald (20th anniversary year)

April 24, Sat.

Field Trip: Spring botany trip to Mt. Pisgah. 9 A.M. to about 2 P.M. Will visit some of the lesser-traveled trails of the Howard Buford Recreation Area. The south slopes will be very showy; expect camas, shooting stars, buttercups, buckbrush and many other springtime treats. Meet: S. Eugene H.S. parking lot, SW corner of 19th and Patterson. Bring lunch and water. Led by Dave Predeek,( policy).

April 26, Mon.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Room 109, Science Building, main campus, Lane Community College. Keith McCree will talk about some of his favorite hiking and wildflower photograph spots in the Middle Fork district. He and his wife Barbro have produced a free CD-ROM with many photographs, trails and associated wildflower lists.

May 15, Sat.

Field Trip: Kathy Pendergrass, BLM botanist, will take us to look at establishing plant communities at wetland mitigation sites in the West Eugene wetlands. 8-12 A.M. Please call Kathy, ( policy), for more information.

May 15, Sat.

Wildflower Festival: To help with set-up of Mt. Pisgah Arboretum Wildflower Festival, come to Arboretum (off Seavey Loop Rd.) starting at 8 A.M. Your help will greatly benefit the show. For information, call Gail Baker,( policy) or( policy), or Dale McBride,( policy).

May 16, Sun.

Wildflower Festival: Set-up for MPA Wildflower Festival, at Arboretum (off Seavey Loop Rd.) starting at 7:30 A.M. Many tasks are needed to make the show come together, and your help will be much appreciated. For information, see above.

May 16, Sun.

Wildflower Festival: 10 A.M. - 4 P.M. Mt. Pisgah Arboretum Wildflower Festival. Celebrate the life and discoveries of David Douglas, in commemoration of the 200th anniversary of his birth, at this annual spring festival, centered around a grand display of wildflowers collected throughout Lane County. All flowers are identified and experts are on hand to identify flowers you bring. The display includes a wide variety of native species, a section on poisonous and medicinal plants and their uses and a selection of grasses, rushes and sedges. There will be guided nature walks, nature craft vendors, live music, children's activities and, new this year, a wildflower photo contest. The event is a cooperative effort of Mt. Pisgah Arboretum, the NPSO and botany students and staff of Lane Community College. Call ( policy), or Dale McBride,( policy), for more information. $2 individual, $5 family.

May 24, Mon.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Room 109, Science Building, main campus, LCC. "Th e Long, Happy Life of Louis F. Henderson," is the subject of Rhoda Love's talk on one of the Northwest's most remarkable plant collectors. Henderson saw mayhem and murder as a boy in Mississippi in the Civil War, went to Cornell, came west in 1874, and tirelessly botanized in OR, WA and ID until his death in 1942. For directions, see April meeting.

High Desert

April 27, Tues.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Central Oregon Environmental Center, 16 NW Kansas, Bend. Dr. Greg Reigal, Area Ecologist, US Forest Service, presents "The Area Ecology Problem: Ongoing Research on National Forest Lands of Central and South-Central Oregon." Among other things, he will discuss recent research in ponderosa pine ecosystems, especially fire ecology, fire history and fire management.

Klamath Basin

April 13, Tues.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Room 219, Owens Hall, OIT, Klamath Falls. Program to be announced. For more information, call David Lebo, ( policy).


April 4, Sun.

Field Trip: Enjoy a short (2-3 hr.) hike in the beautiful Catherine Creek area of the Gorge, designed to acquaint or reacquaint people the Gorge's spring wildflowers. Offered in conjunction with the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center. Registration required! To register, call David Weiss (Forrest Service), ( policy), ext. 213. Leader: Barbara Robinson,( policy). Meet: 10 A.M., Discovery Center, The Dalles, exit 82 off I-84.

April 7 Wed.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Discovery Center Theatre, The Dalles. Imagine a beautiful, dove-gray, delicately veined and crenellated lichen that grows on rocks under water. This is Hydrotheria venosa, a rare Pacific Northwest endemic. Chiska Derr, expert lichenologist and US Forest Service botanist, will share information she has gleaned >from her stud of this unusual species.

April 18, Sun.

Plant Show: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Mosier School (exit 69 off I-84). Our annual plant show, with a large display of plants from all over the Gorge and nearby areas. Same day as the Fireman's Smorgasbord. Don't miss either. NOTE: THE DATE HAS BEEN CHANGED SINCE REPORT IN LAST MONTH'S BULLETIN.

April 18, Sun.

Field Trip: Hike through oak woodland to the top of a small (450 ft.) wildflower covered hill in the Memaloose Overlook area of the Gorge, for a panoramic view. About 3 hrs. Offered in conjunction with Columbia Gorge Discovery Center. Registration required! To register, call David Weiss (Forest Service), ( policy), ext. 213. Leader: Barbara Robinson. Meet: 10 A.M., Discovery Center, The Dalles, exit 82 off I-84.

May 2, Sun.

Field Trip: Hike to McCall Point (1000 ft.) in the oak woodland area of the Gorge, at the peak bloom of the balsamroots, lupines and Indian paint brush, for a gorgeous view. Offered in conjunction with the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center. Registration required! To register, call David Weiss (Forest Service), ( policy). Leader: Barbara Robinson,( policy). Meet: 10 A.M., Discovery Center, The Dalles, exit 82 off I-84.

May 5, Wed.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Discovery Center Theatre, The Dalles. Linda McMahan, Plants for Partners, tells us about their program to teach volunteers to survey and study endangered plants in up to a week of intensive study, with possible college credit.

May 22, Sat.

Field Trip: Visit Jerry Igo's lovely acreage in the oak woodlands of the Gorge. See lady slipper orchids and many other flowers. Jerry will show us around. Trip is in conjunction with Corvallis Orchid Society. Meet across from the Mosier Store, exit 69 off I-84, 11 A.M.

North Coast


For information on the North Coast Chapter, call Christine Stanley, ( policy).


April 4, Sun.

Field Trip: Catherine Creek. Car pool from Gateway/99th Ave. Park & Ride, southeast corner of parking lot. Take exit 7 from I-84, turn immediately right onto 99th Ave. Leave: 8:30 A.M. Meet trip leader at trailhead. Joint trip with Mid-Columbia Chapter, which see for more information. Pre-registration required.

April 13, Tues.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Room 355, First United Methodist Church, 1838 Jefferson St., Portland. Botanist and Forest Ecologist, Christine Ebrahimi, will speak about "A Love Affair With The Steens," after 12 years of studying the flora, from the grasslands to the alpine areas.

April 17, Sat.

Field Trip: Cape Falcon. Along with great views of the ocean, see Synthyris reniformis, Viola adunca, maybe the early yellow violet, and many more on this moderate, 4 mi. R.T. hike. Car pool from Cedar Hills Shopping Center parking lot. (Westbound from Portland on Hwy. 26, take exit 69B, follow signs to Cedar Hills. Northbound on Hwy. 217, take exit to Hwy 26E/Cedar Hills, follow signs to Cedar Hills). Leave: 8:30 A.M. Remember to pack lunch, and rain gear, if weather looks doubtful. Meet trip leader, Christine Stanley, at trailhead, Oswald West State Park, first parking lot on the right, going south on 101 from Hwy. 26, at 10 A.M. For more information, call Christine, ( policy).

April 18, Sun.

Field Trip: Memaloose Overlook. Car pool from Gateway/99th Ave. Park & Ride. Leave: 8:30 A.M. Pre-registration required. Joint trip with Mid-Columbia Chapter, which see for information.

April 18, Sun.

Field Trip: Mosier Wildflower Show. Car pool >from Gateway 99th/Ave. Park & Ride. Leave: 8:30 A.M. No trip leader. See Mid-Columbia Chapter for information. NOTE: DATE CHANGED SINCE LAST MONTH'S REPORT.

May 2, Sun.

Field Trip: McCall Point. Car pool from Gateway/99th Ave. Park & Ride. Leave: 8:30 A.M. Pre-Registration required. See Mid-Columbia Chapter for details.


April 3, Sat.

Field Trip: Limpy Creek. Leader: Maria Ulloa: A beautiful example of both serpentine wetlands and drylands that is very close to Grants Pass. Meet: 10 A.M., US Forest Service office in Grants Pass, 200 NE Greenfield Rd. (just north of exit 58 on I-5). For more information, call Maria, ( policy).

April 10, Sat.

Field Trip: Leader: Barbara Mumblo. Meet: 10 A.M., lower Table Rock trailhead. This is a joint trip with The Nature Conservancy. Registration required! Call( policy), to register.

April 10, Sat.

Field Trip: Rough and Ready again. Leaders: Mike Anderson and Don Heinze. Observe the intraseasonal succession (changes in numbers, development and species) in a single spring month at this botanical gem. Meet: Illinois Valley Visitor's Center, 201 Caves Hwy., Cave Junction, 9 A.M. For more information, call Don, ( policy).

April 11, Sun.

Field Trip: In search of steelhead. Leader: Rich Nawa. For more information, call Rich at ( policy).

April 15, Thur.

Meeting: 7:30 P.M. Room 171, Science Building, SOU, Ashland. Dr. Steve Jessup, Southern Oregon University, presents "High Elevation Endemism in Draba: In Situ Speciation, or Relicts of a Panwestern Periglacial Radiation." Also, Wayne Rolle of the Rogue River National Forest will give s brief presentation on the Mt. Ashland Ski Area Expansion.

April 17, Sat.

Field Trip: Star Flat. Leader: Don Heinze. A myriad of rare or once considered rare plants, such as California lady's slipper, California pitcher plant, large-flowered rush lily, Del Norte sweetpea, Waldo rockcress and Siskiyou Mountains pennycress, along with other not rare but nevertheless beautiful lilies and orchids in a fascinating serpentine fen. Meet: 9 A.M., south side of Selma Market parking lot in Selma. Call Don, ( policy), for more information.

April 18, Sun.

Field Trip: In search of steelhead, Leader: Rich Nawa. Call Rich, ( policy).

April 24

Field Trip: Lower Table Rock. Leader: Barbara Mumblo. See dwarf meadow-foam, a rare plant found nowhere else on earth, along with many other flowers found in a unique setting. Meet: 9 A.M., McDonald's parking lot, Barnet Rd., Medford. For more information, call Barbara, ( policy).

April 25, Sun.

Field Trip: Khoerry Creek. Leader: Rich Nawa. See southwest Oregon's beautiful, unique and imperiled Port Orford cedars in an old-growth forest. For more information, call Rich, ( policy).

May 1, Sat.

Field Trip: Illinois River canyon. Leaders: Don Heinze, Steve Marsden. Along with many other flowers, you will see the most accessible stand of kalmiopsis (for which the Wilderness was named) and a population of western sopora. Both are rare plants that were originally found and named after one of Oregon's best known pioneer botanists, Lila Leach. Meet: 9 A.M., south side of Selma Market parking lot in Selma. For more information, call Don, ( policy).

South Coast


For information on the South Coast Chapter, call Bruce Rittenhouse, ( policy).

Umpqua Valley

April 8, Thur.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Room 310, Douglas County Courthouse, Roseburg. Cheryl Beyer, BLM botanist, will introduce us to mosses, emphasizing the Fall Creek area.

April 10, Sat.

Field Trip: To Fall Creek area, up the N. Umpqua, Hwy. 138, to observe mosses, with botanist Cheryl Beyer as guide. Meet: BLM parking lot, 777 Garden Valley Blvd., prior to 8 A.M. departure. For information, call( policy).

Willamette Valley

April 19, Mon.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Room 225, United Methodist Church, 600 State St. NE, Salem. Brian Dutton of Western Oregon University will speak and show slides on "Planning a Modern Flora of Polk County, Oregon: A Status Report."


Meeting: 7 P.M. Room 225, United Methodist Church, 600 State St. NE, Salem. Miles McCoy will give a talk and show slides on the Oregon Garden at Silverton.

William Cusick


Officers: Newly elected officers are: Frazier Nichol, president; Bob Ottersberg, vice president; Lucinda Huber, secretary/treasurer.

April 7, Wed.

Meeting: 7 P.M. Forest and Range Laboratory, C Ave. & Gekeler Lane, La Grande. This will be a meeting to plan field trips and there will be a slide show of past trips. It has been scheduled early in the month, so that trips we plan can be reported in time to be in the next Bulletin.

April 3, Sat.

Field Trip: 1 P.M. Meet at Oregon Trail Interpretive Center, just outside of Baker City to look at their vegetation plan and then walk outside to look at their grounds. The BLM needs to do some veg management; they are writing an environmental assessment and would like input from NPSO members. If people are interested, Clair Button, BLM botanist, will also show us a unique mining restoration project nearby. For more information, call Clair, ( policy).

Karl Urban Remembered



"A flower is an exquisite thing - beautiful, delicate and a harbinger of hope for the green world that lets us all survive. I find no need to claim that flower as my own. With clear conscience I throw out the trowel! Flowers forever". (Reprinted from an article written by Karl in 1983 entitled "Requiem for a Haybaler: Throwing in (out) the Trowel")


Karl Urban was born June 6, 1943 in Kimberly, Idaho. He grew up in Kimberly where he attended grade and high school. In 1962 he attended the University of Idaho, where he majored in Botany, and he then received his masters in Botany in 1968.


In that same year he moved to Pendleton to accept a position as instructor of Botany at Blue Mountain Community College where he taught for 23 years. His spring wildflower identification classes became an anticipated event by many Pendleton residents. Each summer for many years, he also taught an intensive two week vascular plant identification course on the Steens Mountains. Here is a quote from one of Karl's writings on his approach to teaching. "Both by profession and by nature I am a teacher. I enjoy sharing my knowledge with others and am delighted when others "seize the torch" and want to learn more". We can say that Karl Urban popularized botany with non-professionals. He was one of the founding members of the Blue Mountain Chapter of the Oregon Native Plant Society, and his wife Elaine was the founding secretary. He was instrumental in the formation of National Wildflower Week. For his tireless efforts he went to Washington D.C. to receive national recognition. He was also instrumental in obtaining a National Science Foundation grant for a solar-heated greenhouse for Blue Mountain Community College.


In 1991 he became the botanist for the Umatilla National Forest. He cared a great deal about the forest resources and environment and had botanized virtually the whole of the Umatilla National Forest. He drew many of the wildflowers of the area and put them on coloring pages so children could learn about their natural heritage. These drawings can be found on the Internet at He also completed a natural vegetation map and associated database for the forest.


His recent work demonstrates the style which came to be Karl's. He worked with total dedication to produce in quantity and quality above and beyond the expectations of others. Karl demonstrated a multi-faceted life with his accomplishments attained during long hours of work but within relatively short time frames. He consistently amazed us with his output.


Probably one of the highlights of Karl's life was the year he spent on Sabbatical at Oregon State University It was 1988 and Karl felt that after twenty years of teaching it was time for a year of refresher studies. So while taking a full load of classes he decided that he still wasn't busy enough, so he proposed to Dr. Kenton Chambers that he might also compile a checklist database with the new computer technology available. Therefore by working day and night for three terms, Karl built the foundation for our current computer database, and he planted the seeds for the current "Oregon Flora Project".


To quote Karl one final time, "My efforts, imperfect as they may have been, were to serve as one of several catalysts that would help the Oregon Checklist and Flora projects get under way. My work is in good hands now, as Oregon's professional botanical community revises and builds upon a foundation I helped initiate. I am ecstatic that my work was not in vain!" Nor was your life in vain Karl. Thank you for carrying that torch so long and so well. We will all do our best to see that the fire continues to burn.


Memorial contributions may be made to the Karl Urban Scholarship Fund at BMCC, directly, or through Burns Mortuary of Pendleton, P.O. Box 489, Pendleton, OR 97801.

Jerry Baker, Blue Mountain Chapter

In Memory of Karl Urban

It was during my many summers at the Malheur Field Station in eastern Oregon that I came to know Karl Urban. During the summer of 1977 I was a cook at the field station, earning enough to take a class or two. Karl Urban was teaching his Vascular Plants of Steens Mountain which was a favorite class, often full to capacity. One attraction to the class was that the class departed early in the week and camped out on Steens Mountain until the weekend. Karl gave the students just enough time at the field station to do their laundry. Then back up the mountain to botanize in the quaking aspen groves, up to the high alpine meadows, down glaciated gorges, to the edges of melting snow packs, and around rushing mountain streams.

Another attraction to the class was the enthusiasm and love of the plants that Karl shared with his classes. Karl became very conservation-minded about collecting and studying the plants on Steens, especially since there are a number of endemic species in the area. After a plant had been keyed by the class, Karl used a big white sketch pad to tape a specimen or two with a list of the key characteristics for the whole class to study. This meant fewer collections of the same plants, ensuring an abundance of plants for many future classes and the public to enjoy.

It was in the summer of 1977 that as a cook I was most discouraged with the "balloon" type bread that was sent out on camping trips from the station. The white bread would get smashed and compacted after days in a box being tossed around on the bumpy roads and was not very useable for sandwiches.That was when I decided to make Karl Urban's class homemade whole wheat bread to last them through their week on Steens Mountain. Karl was very grateful for this special addition to the supplies since it made his week just a little easier on the mountain top. In gratitude for the whole wheat bread and for packing his week long supplies; Karl and his class presented me with a copy of the Flora of the Pacific Northwest by Hitchcock and Cronquist inscribed by Karl and his class. This random act of kindness was typical of Karl. We will miss Karl for his enthusiasm in teaching botany and for his love of plants, especially of Steens Mountain.

Esther Gruber McEvoy, Corvallis Chapter


The drawing and text below are by Karl Urban (to be provided)

Mill Creek Falls Knapweed Pull

Saturday and Sunday, May 1-2

Mike Igo led a hike into Mill Creek Falls during the NPSO Annual Meeting in May 1998. While there, we noted that fire road disturbance dating from the 1978 "School Marm" fire introduced diffuse knapweed into this unique, isolated community of west-side plants in the middle of the desert. We vowed to return and remove it. We did, in August of last year, and we plan to return again this spring to remove any knapweed that may have escaped our attention last August. We will also remove knapweed along some of the watershed service roads.

Mill Creek Falls is a spectacular, towering waterfall that drops into a deep, north-facing basalt canyon on South Fork Mill Creek, in The Dalles Watershed, an area not open to public access. The mist-filled canyon at the base of the falls supports a plant community reminiscent of similar settings in the Western Gorge. Here, however, thimbleberry thickets and towering western red cedar grow surrounded by a parched landscape of oak, juniper and sage. In May, balsamroot and lupine will adorn the surrounding oak savanna.

This weekend work party will be a privileged opportunity to visit this unique spot. We have made arrangements with The Dalles Watershed to gain entry. Party size will be limited to about 15. We will camp Saturday night near the reservoir. Access to our campsite will be by 4WD trail. This will be a joint venture with the Pacific Coast Rover Club, whose members will provide transportation by Land Rover into our campsite. This will be a primitive camp with no water, though we will have the use of the patrol cabin for cooking and gear storage.

Contact Mike McKeag, ( policy), to sign up, and for more information, including meeting time and location Saturday morning.

Michael McKeag, Portland Chapter

NPSO Items for Sale

Oregon's Rare Wildflower Poster depicts Punchbowl Falls and three of the Columbia River Gorge's endemic wildflowers. Text on the back describes the natural history of the Gorge and the mission of the NPSO. Available from Stu Garrett. Individual may order posters at $12 each, plus $3 per order for shipping. Posters are mailed in tubes. Chapter treasures may contact Stu for wholesale prices to chapters.

NPSO Window Stickers are decals with NPSO's trillium logo in green over an opaque white background, for use inside car windows. Available from Stu Garrett, $1, minimum order five.

NPSO's Original Wildflower Poster depicts 13 Oregon wildflowers in a striking artist's rendition. Soon to be a collector's item. Available from Stephanie Schulz, $5 each, plus $3 per order for shipping. Posters are mailed in tubes.

Conservation and Management of Native Plants and Fungi: Proceedings of an Oregon Conference on the Conservation and Management of Native Vascular Plants, Bryophytes, and Fungi. Edited by Thomas N. Kaye, Aaron Liston, Rhoda M. Love, Daniel L. Louma, Robert J. Meinke, and Mark V. Wilson, with a foreword by Reed F. Noss. Available from NPSO Conference Proceedings, 804 Jefferson Ave., La Grande, OR 97850. (541) 962-7749. SALE PRICE: $5, plus $2.50 for shipping.



Learn to identify and recognize the common wildflowers of the Willamette Valley. Rhoda Love, retired professor of botany at Lane Community College, will show you how, on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, April 30, May 1 and 2, from 9 A.M. to 3 P.M. each day. The course is sponsored by Mt. Pisgah Arboretum and will take place at Emerald People's Utility in Eugene. Space is limited, so register early. Call the MPA Education Program, 541-747-1504, to register.



The 33rd annual Glide Wildflower Show will take place on April 24 and 25, 1999 at the Glide Community Center, Highway 138 East, in Glide, Oregon. Admission is free, although donations are welcome. The event is accessible by wheelchair. For conservation reasons, you are asked not to bring unsolicited specimens.

For more information, call Eleanor Hayes at ( policy), or write to: Glide Wildflower Show, Box 332, Glide, Oregon 97443.

Friends Monthly report to be provided

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Last Modified December 13, 1998