Indian paintbrush (Castilleja spp.) is a wildflower native to western North America. It is known for its showy flowers of a variety of colors especially, reds, pinks, and oranges. It is edible.

Deryn Davidson, Colorado State University Extension – Boulder County

What’s the buzz about native plants? Find out at the 7th Annual Landscaping with Colorado Native Plants Conference! Experts in horticulture, ecology and landscape design share how to plan, plant and maintain beautiful and biodiverse native landscapes from the ground up.

To enable participation statewide, this year’s conference is online. Recordings of the speakers’ presentations will be available for registrants to view after the event as well. The conference runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 26. Registered attendees are invited to preview the conference platform prior to the event (links will be distributed by Feb. 23).

Register now for this virtual event at: pheedloop.com/LWCNPConference/site/home.

Featuring speakers from diverse fields, this year’s Landscaping with Colorado Native Plants Conference offers inspiration and insight to both novice and tenured gardeners. For professionals in the horticulture and design industries, all classes at this conference are eligible for CEUs for Landscape Industry Certified Technician recertification. This year’s keynote speaker, renowned entomologist Dr. Doug Tallamy and author of Nature’s Best Hope outlines a homegrown approach to conservation. Other program topics include merging ecosystem function with landscape aesthetics, growing Castilleja spp. in Colorado gardens, well-behaved prairie plants, gardens that cater to Colorado birds, and native plant production. The Conference will also showcase the River’s Edge Natural Area Native Plant Demonstration Garden in Loveland and the 2021 Conference Grant awardee residential and public gardens.

“As a gardener, it is a delight to see my fellow horticulturalists working alongside birders, ecologists, entomologists and botanists to encourage the use of native plants in landscapes,” says Jennifer Bousselot, Assistant Professor in Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Colorado State University. Not only do native plants attract and support imperiled insect and bird populations, they connect people to the land and to the community.

The Landscaping with Colorado Native Plants Conference is a collaborative, educational initiative that promotes the inclusion of native plants in our landscaping to benefit pollinators and songbirds, save water, and restore the beauty and health of nature in the places we live, work and play. (Image courtesy: CSU Extension).

The Landscaping with Colorado Native Plants Conference is a collaborative, educational initiative that promotes the inclusion of native plants in our landscaping to benefit pollinators and songbirds, save water, and restore the beauty and health of nature in the places we live, work and play.

The Landscaping with Colorado Native Plants Conference is brought to you by a coalition of partners: the Butterfly Pavilion, Colorado State University Extension and the Colorado Native Plant Master Program®, the Colorado Native Plant Society, the Denver Botanic Gardens, the Wild Ones Front Range Chapter, the High Plains Environmental Center and Susan J. Tweit, author and plant ecologist.

“Our collaboration of partners, all with a shared mission of conserving native plants and pollinators, have been extremely pleased with the enthusiastic public response,” says Jim Tolstrup, Executive Director of the High Plains Environmental Center.

We are seeing a shift in public awareness of the critical role that native plants play in our local food webs and in people’s desire to make an impact. Jim writes, “We need our landscaping to be more than just pretty, we can utilize landscaping as a life raft to save our dwindling wildlife and share the world that we design and build with them.”

We hope to see you there!

By Deryn Davidson. Deryn is an Extension Agent – Horticulture at Colorado State University Extension Boulder County. For more information contact CSU Extension at the Boulder County Fairgrounds, 9595 Nelson Road, Box B, Longmont, 303.678.6386, e-mail [email protected] or visit boulder.extension.colostate.edu.