2019 Conference Workshops

Workshops require advance registration and some have fees

Please check the individual workshop descriptions below for additional information

Step-by-Step Native Landscaping

Workshop Leader Marjorie Shropshire

Thursday 8:30-11:00am

This course answers the question:  “I want to make my home landscape more sustainable. How do I get started with natives?”  Attendees will learn how to assess their properties and various strategies for transforming them into places that support birds, pollinators and people.

3 hour workshop (includes a 15 min. break)
60-minute presentation:
  •  Why natives
  •  Assessing a property
  •  Stormwater & shorelines
  •  Woody plants
  •  Herbaceous plants
  •  Wild areas
  •  Landscape poisons
  •  Human-use areas
15-minute Q&A | 15-minute break
90-minute hands-on workshop where attendees sketch a landscape plan
Cost: $7
Marjorie Shropshire was born in Miami, Florida and grew up roaming the Florida Keys, the Everglades and the east and west coasts of Southern Florida. As a result, she developed an early and lasting interest in Florida’s plants, animals and ecosystems.
Marjorie is interested in how what we do in our yards can impact natural systems around Florida, and she is a long-time member of the Florida Native Plant Society. She has edited and produced the Society’s magazine, Palmetto since 2005. 
Marjorie and Ginny Stibolt are co-authors on the book A Step-by-Step Guide to a Florida Native Yard, published by the University Press of Florida (UPF) in 2018. The book focuses how anyone can convert a typical Florida yard into a place that sequesters stormwater, provides resting and feeding areas for migratory birds, supports pollinators, and needs no fertilizer, herbicides or pesticides. 
Marjorie leads workshops based on the book, as well as workshops in the art of nature and field journaling. She also participates in citizen science initiatives and assisted with a pilot project to reintroduce the four-petal pawpaw, a federally endangered plant, to the Savannas Preserve State Park in Martin County, Florida. As a result of this project, she has become interested in all of Florida’s pawpaw species, traveling around the state to observe and document them. 
Marjorie has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida and is in the final year of her master’s program at the University of Florida, Gainesville. She has completed the Coastal Shoreline Restoration and Coastal and Upland Systems Modules of the Florida Master Naturalist Program and is a member of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators. 

Pine Needle Basketry

Making pine needle baskets with Judie Bradley

Learn how to make pine needle baskets from our native longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) needles.

Thursday 9:00am-12:00pm
Cost: $10


Judie has been teaching pine needle basketry for ten years. She has lived all over the world but has been in Florida for over 40 years.

Landscaping for Pollinators

Thursday 1:20-3:30pm
Cost: $17

Want to transform your yard into an oasis for butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds? This workshop will teach you the vital components of a pollinator-friendly landscape. We’ll offer a closer look at Florida’s native pollinators, including insect ID activities. This workshop will cover landscape design and care tips for making your pollinator habitat appealing to both pollinators and your neighbors, and highlight key native plants for attracting pollinators.

Workshop Leaders Rachel Mallinger and Jessica Sullivan 


Jessica Sullivan has a B.S. in Horticultural Therapy and a M.S. in Entomology. In her 17 years as an Extension Educator, she has taught diverse topics from sustainable landscaping and arboriculture to crop production and beekeeping. Sullivan has a passion for empowering people to protect and cultivating productive habitats for people, plants, and animals.

Dr. Rachel Mallinger leads research on plant-pollinator interactions and pollinator community ecology with an emphasis on native bees. She conducts research in natural, agricultural, and urban ecosystems to inform pollinator conservation and improve pollination to crops and wild plants.

Beneficial Insects and Florida’s Native Plants

The Keys to a Sustainable Landscape - Workshop Leader Taryn Evans

Saturday 12:20pm-1:20pm
Cost: FREE!

Insects play a vital role in the environment, and their population numbers are falling in both backyards, and in the wild. It's about more than milkweed now, but luckily it's easy to make an insect sanctuary as part of your landscape. So, how well do you know the beneficial insects in your garden? What is their role in a healthy, environmentally-sound landscape? What's a beetle bank? This program addresses these questions while giving you a quick crash course in identifying just a few that may be visiting your garden. It’s interactive and fun and you will learn a lot at the same time!


Taryn Evans has long been a proponent of native plants and sustainable landscapes. She was the president of the Marion Big Scrub Chapter for seven years, recently completed a course on the principles of sustainable landscaping offered by the U.S. Botanic Garden and the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, and is working on her Master Naturalist certificate from UF/IFAS. Additionally, she is co-owner, with her husband, Terry, of Creative Garden Structures, a small retail garden shop that specializes in helping homeowners create backyard habitat. They sell native plants, as well as, bee, bird, and bat boxes from their home in Marion County. Taryn also maintains a demonstration garden on one acre of land designed to help interested homeowners understand better Florida’s native plants and the principles of sustainable gardening, like rainwater harvesting, less fertilizer/pesticide use, and “right plant for right place” Of primary importance to her is conveying the message to others about the need for all types of insects in our gardens and landscapes, especially pollinators, like Florida’s native bees and how we can best support them by providing appropriate habitat in the outdoor spaces we manage. After visiting their demonstration garden, the hope is that people are inspired to do more to make their own garden one part of a more sustainable Florida!