Happy Native Plant Appreciation Week

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Blooms of blue camas and golden paintbrush, a rare native plant federally listed as “threatened” and state listed as “endangered”, at Rocky Prairie NAP. Photo by: Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark/DNR.

This week, April 23 – May 1, is a celebration of the amazing diversity of Washington’s native plant species.

The different climates found in Washington allow for a vast variety of native plants, from sword ferns to cacti, to the many species that call prairies, forests, and shrub-steppe home.

There are good reasons for concern about Washington’s biological diversity – more than 20 percent of the state’s native plant species are rare, threatened or endangered. The best way to preserve these species is for citizens, landowners, public agencies, and nonprofit organizations to work together to conserve the lands on which the plants grow.

One example is DNR’s Natural Areas Program. DNR actually manages two types of natural areas – Natural Resources Conservation Area (NRCA) and Natural Areas Preserves (NAP). Some have interpretive trails and many provide low-impact activities, like hiking.

Take time this week to check out the native flowers in your area, and celebrate the natural native beauty of Washington’s great outdoors in honor of Native Plant Appreciation Week.

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