2022 Rare Plant Task Force

Rare Plant Task Force 2022 Online Registration

The annual Rare Plant Task Force is a state-wide meeting to bring together the network of Conservation professionals from a variety of disciplines and agencies to share approaches and findings, forge new partnerships and discuss rare plant conservation priorities. This annual meeting is made possible by grants from the State of Florida, Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Plant Industry.

The Mission of the Florida Plant Conservation Alliance (FPCA) is to study and preserve Florida’s flora through multi-disciplinary research, education, and advocacy; facilitate the recovery of rare, threatened, and endangered plants of Florida and the southeastern US through collaborative efforts in our state; and communicate the importance of preserving biodiversity worldwide.

The meeting is co-hosted by Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden and Bok Tower Gardens, and sponsored by Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Plant Industry.

Participants MUST register in advance through Bok Tower Gardens. Coordinators reserve the right to decline any registrants. By registering, you agree to take no photos or videos of the meeting (except by express permission of the organizers), nor record, post, or share any of the data or information presented. Registration is $20 per participant. Please note: Participants will receive the virtual conference link via the registration confirmation email.

Thursday, April 28

Welcome and conference overview with Cheryl Peterson and Jennifer Possley

Keynote Address
Abby Meyer, Botanic Gardens Conservation International. “Metacollections in the next decade of botanic garden plant conservation.”

Session I – Assessments and state-wide collaborations
(25 minute presentations with 5 minutes for questions)

Sara Johnson, David Zaya, and Brenda Molano-Flores, Illinois Natural History Survey; and Janice Coons, Eastern Illinois University. “Reassessing the Conservation Status of Rare Species: A Case-study with Macbridea alba, a Florida Endemic Mint.”

Hanna Rosner-Katz, Florida Natural Areas Inventory; Katie Heineman and Joyce Maschinski, Center for Plant Conservation. “Florida Plant Rescue: Collection and Collaboration Lead to Conservation!”


Group Discussion: annual discussion and information gathering for the Florida Plant Conservation Alliance. Led by Houston Snead, Jacksonville Zoo and Botanical Gardens.

Amy Jenkins, Hanna Rosner-Katz, and Frank Price, Florida Natural Areas Inventory. “What’s New in 2022: An Update on FNAI’s Plant Conservation Projects.”

Lunch break (rare plant photo slide show)

Session II – Species research

Gina R. Hanko, Miami University; Vivian Negron-Ortiz, United States Fish and Wildlife Service; and Richard C. Moore, Miami University. “Using Genomic Analysis to Assess Diversity and Clonal Propagation of the Florida Skullcap (Scutellaria floridana).”

Sterling A. Herron, Haley Dole, Stephanie M. Koontz, Scott G. Ward, Aaron S. David, and Eric S. Menges, Archbold Biological Station. “Long-term persistence and fire effects on the rare scrub lichen Cladonia perforata.”

Jay Horn, Florida Gulf Coast University. “Title TBD.”

Shawn C. McCourt and Sally M. Chambers, Marie Selby Botanical Gardens. “Assessment and Conservation of the Aboriginal Prickly-Apple Cactus Harrisia aboriginum.”


Brenda Molano-Flores, Illinois Natural History Survey; Janice Coons, Eastern Illinois University; Sara Johnson, Illinois Natural History Survey; Jenna Annis, Florida Natural Areas Inventory; and Nancy Coutant, Eastern Illinois University. “Ex-situ Germination for Seeds, Some Buried, from Different Populations of Pinguicula ionantha and Two Congeners.”

O.U. Onokpise, T. Brown, F. Gainous, and G. Nurse, Brooksville Agricultural and Environmental Research Station, Florida A&M University, and C. Peterson, Bok Tower Gardens. “Brooksville Bellflower Habitat Restoration through cow grazing pressure.”

Brian J. Sidoti, Sabine Wintergerst, Jamie Anderson, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Jolynne Woodmansee, Cristina Whelan, Jonathan Benites, Alyssa Cabrera, Angela Calzadilla, Gabriela Chong Kam, Gian Comprendio, Joshua Cooper, Megan Distelhorst, Diego Godoy, Marina Gomez-Valdes, Jesenia Leon, Jacob Lorenzo, Isabella Mendizabal, Jean Moreno-Gongora, Bryce Nunez, Adelise Olmo, Jean Peguero, Micheal Penton, Gladys Quezada, Ray Rodriguez, and Nicole Silva, BioTECH at Richmond Heights, “Bromeliad conservations projects in-situ at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden.”

Maria T. Vogel, Miami University; Dr. Vivian Negrón-Ortiz, US Fish and Wildlife Service, and Richard Moore, Miami University. “Conservation findings of petitioned Henry’s Spiderlily (Hymenocallis henryae).”

Aaron S. David and Haley Dole, Archbold Biological Station; Suzanne Kennedy, Floravista, Inc.; Stephanie Koontz, Scott G. Ward, and Eric S. Menges, Archbold Biological Station. “Introductions and augmentations of two species of Dicerandra in Florida scrub.”

Wrap-up and overview of tomorrow.

Download 2022 RPTF General AgendaDownload 2022 Abstracts


Friday, April 29

Day two will consist of a variety of half-day field trip adventures to local native habitats and points of interest followed by a virtual online session.

Optional Field Trip 1 – Field Trip 1 – Longleaf Flatwoods Reserve Tour – Hawthorne, FL, Alachua County
Led by Grace Howell, Conservation Programs Coordinator at Alachua Conservation Trust (limited to 15 people)

Participants will enjoy a guided hike at Longleaf Flatwoods Reserve.
Meeting location and time: Longleaf Flatwoods Reserve Parking, Co Rd 325, Hawthorne, FL 32640 (29.565389,-82.189091); 9:00-11AM

Optional Field Trip 2 – Lake Wales Ridge State Forest Tour – Frostproof, FL, Polk County
Led by Austin Ritenour, Forest Biologist (limited to 15 people)

Explore Sandhill and Scrub habitats on the Arbuckle tract of the Lake Wales Ridge State Forest on a guided tour with Florida Forest Service Biologist Austin Ritenour. Meeting location and time: LWRSF Headquarters at 851 CR 630 E, Frostproof, FL 33843; 9:00-11:30AM.

Optional Field Trip 3 – Historic Spanish Point Tour led by Bruce Holst & Elizabeth Gandy, Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, with an opening welcome by John McCarthy, VP for Historic Spanish Point (limited to 15 people).
Field trip participants will enjoy a guided walk along the trails that meander this 30-acre preserve which showcases both coastal natural communities now considered rare, as well as historical artifacts and structures that tell the story of human habitation in the area from as far back as 5,000 years. Meeting location and time: Marie Selby Botanical Gardens’ Historic Spanish Point campus; 337 North Tamiami Trail, Osprey, FL 34229; 9:00AM-11:00PM.

Optional Field Trip 4 – Nixon Smiley Pineland Preserve and Additional – Miami, FL, Miami-Dada County
Led by Tiffany Melvin, Biologist II, Miami-Dade County Environmentally Endangered Lands Program (limited to 15 people).

Tour this 120-acre preserve on the western edge of Miami’s Rock Ridge representing the ecotone between pine rockland and rocky marl prairie. Meeting location and time: TBD, Miami, Florida; 9:00AM-noon.

Optional Field Trip 5 – Apalachicola National Forest – Apalachicola, FL, Franklin, Gulf, and Liberty County Led by Amy Jenkins, Senior Botanist, Florida Natural Areas Inventory (limited to 15 people)
Participants will enjoy a guided hike within the globally outstanding, diverse flora of the Apalachicola National Forest’s Wet Prairie habitat, a.k.a. “pitcherplant bogs”. Meeting location and time: Telogia Park and Ride, southeast corner of SR 65 and SR 67, Liberty County, 30.3499124, -84.8193921; 9:00-11AM

Optional Field Trip 6 – Miramar Pinelands Restoration Tour – Miramar, FL, Broward County
Co-led by Emily Guinan, Conservation Team at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden and Michel Therrien, Senior Natural Resources Specialist at Broward County Parks & Recreation (limited to 20 people).

Participants will take a guided tour through scrubby slash-pine flatwoods and historically wet prairie, both in the early stages of vegetative succession, as well as a recent wetland that was added. Meeting location and time: Miramar Pinelands parking lot at 3600 S University Dr, Miramar, FL 33025; 9:00-11:30AM.

Virtual Afternoon Poster Session
(10-minute presentations with 5 minutes for questions)

Introduction with Whitney Costner and Jennifer Possley

Haley E. Dole, Eric S. Menges and Aaron S. David, Archbold Biological Station. “Rapid reestablishment of insect herbivory following fire on Lyonia fruticosa, an ericaceous shrub of the Florida scrub.”

Jennifer Possley, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden; Colleen Werner, Florida Forest Service, Withlacoochee State Forest; and Lindsey Riibe, University of Florida. “Overview of recent rare fern collaborations.”

Ella Segal and Aaron S. David, Archbold Biological Station. “Characterizing the vertical structure of Paronychia chartacea and Hypericum cumulicola seed banks across habitats and disturbance histories in the Florida scrub.”

Hyland Alfonso, Ouachita Baptist University, Cheryl Peterson, Bok Tower Gardens, Christin L. Pruett, Ouachita Baptist University. “Genetic diversity and population structure of an endangered Florida endemic, Warea amplexifolia.”

Bárbara Nogueira Souza Costa, Regina Gonzalez, Daniel Tucker, Amir Sayyeed Sabir and Amir Ali Khoddamzadeh, Florida International University. “Nitrogen Management Using Non-Destructive Optical Sensors in Wild Coffee.”

2:05 – 2:15

Brittany Harris and Suzanne Koptur, Florida International University. “Pollination of the endangered sand flax, Linum arenicola (Linaceae), in the lower Florida Keys.”

Daniel Tucker, Bárbara Nogueira Souza Costa and Amir Ali Khoddamzadeh, Florida International University. “Application of Optical Sensor Technologies for Fertilizer Management Optimization in Chrysobalanus icaco.”

Amber G. Gardner, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and Héctor E. Pérez, University of Florida. “Harperocallis flava seeds may exhibit interpopulation differences in storage physiology, showing signs of orthodox and intermediate storage behavior.”

Danny Young, Young Bear Environmental. “Microhabitat requirements of Rugel’s pawpaw, Deeringothamnus rugelii.”

Sonali Saha, Miami Dade College; Erika Bonnema, Miami Beach Botanical Garden; Caroline Castro, Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science; and Vanessa Diaz. “Developing outreach to underscore the monumental role of coastal dunes of Miami Beach to the integrity of inland areas and ecosystems.”

Syed Qadri, South Florida State College; Amanda Money, University of Florida; and Kate Calvin, South Florida State College. “GC-MS Analysis of Bioactive Compounds in Ziziphus celata.”

3:45-4:00 James Lange, National Park Service; George D. Gann, The Institute for Regional Conservation; Lydia Cuni, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden; Hong Liu, Florida International University; Kristie Wendelberger, Rodale Institute Southeast Organic Center; Erick Revuelta, St. Johns River Water Management District; Alexander Antonio Marino Lemus, Florida International University; and Cara A. Rockwell (presenter), Florida International University. “Assessment of post-hurricane shifts in a coastal plant community and the decline of a federally listed threatened species at Northwest Cape Sable, Everglades National Park.”

Theresa Chormanski and David Fundora, Miami-Dade College. “Observations of Florida Native Fern Spore Germination and Sporophyte Formation.”

Conference synopsis, review of resources and important dates for 2022, a report from field trips, conference feedback, and ideas for next year. Discussion and questions from all attendees will be encouraged.

Rare Plant Task Force 2022 Online Registration