WEBINAR — Wildflowers and Weeds: Exploring What Native Means

Wildflowers and Weeds: Exploring What Native Means was originally broadcast live on February 22, 2024. View the recording above.

Many of us refer to certain plants as Florida natives without giving it much thought. But what do we actually mean by the term “native”? What are the best resources for confirming if a particular species is native to your area, and what types of information do botanists look at to determine if a species is native to Florida? Marc Frank, extension botanist at the University of Florida Herbarium, helps answer these questions. He also reviews several species for which the opinion on native status has recently changed or is unresolved, and he’ll discuss some things to consider when purchasing and gardening with Florida native plants or using them in restoration projects.

Marc Frank is a lifelong plant enthusiast who completed Florida Master Gardener training in Alachua County in 2002 and earned a MS in horticultural science from the University of Florida in 2005. He has worked as manager of the nursery at the Singapore Botanic Gardens and as a botanist at the Florida Department of Agriculture. Currently, he is the assistant collection manager and extension botanist at the University of Florida Herbarium — the botanical collection at the Florida Museum of Natural History. Marc manages the Herbarium’s Plant Identification and Information Service, which serves UF/IFAS research and extension personnel, UF faculty, and other clients throughout the state of Florida. He has a particular interest in horticultural taxonomy, the identification and classification of cultivated plants.

Marc S. Frank