Gardening-Plant Poaching

Posted: Friday, May 31, 2002

If you are cleared to collect plants from their natural settings on public lands, here are some tips:

--Don't dig or take cuttings from native plants in the wild except as part of a scientific or salvage project sponsored by a responsible group or organization. Such a project also should have the landowner's consent.

--If you're collecting seeds from the wild, collect just a few seeds from each of many plants and then only from locally abundant species. Leave sufficient seeds for the plant population to reseed itself.

--Know something about the wildflowers or wild species you're collecting so you can provide a suitable habitat for them at home. Many wild plants don't take readily to being transplanted.

--Let all of your acts reflect your respect for wild plants as integral parts of the natural landscape. Every time you pick a flower or disturb a patch of wild plants, your action affects the natural world. The cumulative effect of the actions of many people can be particularly harmful.

Source: Virginia Native Plant Society

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