Field trip: Lake Marion Creek WMA

Join us on Saturday, Sept. 24 at 9:30am for a guided hike through Lake Marion Creek Wildlife Management Area (WMA) near Haines City led by retired environmental journalist Tom Palmer.

Lake Marion Creek WMA boasts diverse natural habitats such as pine flatwoods, sand hills and riverine swamp forests, and offers a chance to see Catesby’s lily (Lilium catesbaei), Vanillaleaf (Carphephorus odoratissimus) and other Carphephorous species starting their fall bloom. We could also see Slenderleaf clammyweed (Polanisia tenuifolia), Forked bluecurls (Trichostema dichotomum) and other common scrub species.

The hike will be 2.5 miles in sandy terrain.

After the hike, participants are welcome to visit a nearby town for lunch. Then, if interested, can return on their own to see the opening of Celestial Lily (Nemastylis floridana) present on the site that only opens in the afternoon.

Pine lily (Lilium catesbaei) by Tom Palmer
Pine lily (Lilium catesbaei) at Lake Marion Creek WMA by Tom Palmer

Registration is free for Florida Wildflower Foundation members and $10 for nonmembers.

Tom Palmer is a retired environmental journalist and Florida native. Originally from Seminole County, he has lived in Polk since 1974. Tom is active on iNaturalist and participates in annual surveys of birds and butterflies all over Central Florida.

Start time: 9:30 a.m.
Trip length: 2 hours
Fee: Free for nonmembers, $10 for members

Register for the Lake Marion Creek WMA field trip here.

Contact Rose Kinane at to find out if your membership is current or needs to be renewed. To join as a member, visit