Thursday, February 22, 2018, 7:30 p.m.: Talks from two of our members: Katie Gallagher and Keir Morse were two of the recipients of a stipend from our chapter to attend the CNPA Conservation Conference in February 2018.

Tamarisk control in maritime succulent scrub: Method refinement for region-wide control in Baja California with Katie Gallagher: Tamarisk or saltcedar is an invasive tree that grows all over the deserts of North America. It grows in maritime succulent scrub habitat, an ecosystem in Baja California that is dominated by drought deciduous shrubs and succulents. Katie Gallagher is experimenting with tamarisk populations on nature preserves to find control methods that are the least impactful to the ecosystem. Which equipment and how much manpower is needed? What is the most effective way to cut and treat the trees? After mapping, performing a pilot treatment, and monitoring success, the results are in! We are on our way to controlling the tamarisk populations for the benefit of the land.

Katie Gallagher is a professional botanist at an environmental consulting company in Pasadena, California. She has a decade of experience studying and working with plants inside and outside of California. Her passion is exploring the flora of unfamiliar lands, including Baja California, and she enjoys volunteering her skills for conservation and habitat restoration.

Bush Mallows — The Genus Malocothamnus with Keir Morse: Malacothamnus is a genus of fire-following shrubs native to California, Arizona, and Baja California. Delineation of taxa within the genus is controversial due to many overlapping morphological characteristics. This in turn makes identification difficult. This presentation gives an introduction to the genus, focusing on characteristics that can be useful for identification and avenues that Kier intends to research to resolve the taxonomy.

Keir Morse is a PhD student at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden / Claremont Graduate University studying the taxonomy of the genus Malacothamnus. He has 21 years of experience as a professional field botanist throughout much of the U.S., but mostly in California. He is well known for his diagnostic botanical photography and has over ~36,000 photos available on the Calphotos website to help people with plant identification.