Suncoast Native Plant Society, Inc. is the Florida Native Plant Society’s Hillsborough County chapter. The chapter was founded in 1983 and is one of the Society's oldest chapters. Suncoast Native Plant Society
The chapter shares with its parent organization, The Florida Native Plant Society, an important mission: to promote the preservation, conservation, and restoration of Florida's native plants and native plant communities.
Florida Native Plant Society
Through the years we have tried to maintain that purpose, focusing our efforts on education, outreach, and community service. Knowledgeable speakers have brought us their expertise on a wide range of topics relating to Florida’s plant and animal communities, and many of our members have further increased their understanding of natural Florida through attendance at conferences and workshops. We have wandered through wild places in search of the native plants we love: Pitcher Plants in vast abundance blooming at the Avon Park Bombing Range, Azaleas seen from canoes on the banks of the Little Manatee River, endangered Florida Goldenasters blooming at Balm-Boyette Scrub, Orchids and Tillandsias at Dead River, and drifts of Pine Lilies at Bell Creek Preserve. Many of us have brought a little of wild Florida to our homes by establishing Florida native plants in our landscapes. In many cases recognition has followed in the form of Wildlife Habitat and Florida Yard designations, and Water-Wise and Green Palmetto awards. Our members have also lent a hand – and shovel – planting natives in public places, such as at English Creek Environmental Center, Cockroach Bay ELAPP site, Lowery Park Zoo, Hillsborough County Greenways, and the USF Botanical Garden We have taken our message to the general public through various events, including a presence at Earth Day celebrations, Plant Park Greenfests, and other fairs and festivals.
In 1997 we published the book The Right Plants for Dry Places: Native Plant Landscaping in Central Florida. Our most recent publication is a brochure on alternatives to cypress mulch, written by Barbara Waddell, who is also notable for the successful restoration, assisted by her “Pepper Patrol”, of an inlet of Tampa Bay in Ruskin, which had been totally engulfed by Brazilian Peppers and Australian Pines.
Each spring and fall we hold a native plant sale at the USF Botanical Gardens. The proceeds from that sale afford us the opportunity to offer grants to other organizations that share our mission.