Despite the wealth of native plant species at our fingertips, we rely too heavily on too few species. By using the great diversity of plants that are native to a region, we can beautify the landscape, minimize inputs, support wildlife, and do away with the ecological deserts created in seas of mulch and functionally sterile lawns.
Randi Eckel, PhD has been studying native plants for over 30 years and founded the mail-order native plant nursery Toadshade Wildflower Farm in 1996 to further public awareness and availability of native plants. A life-long naturalist, lover of nature, and confirmed plant and ecology nerd, she specializes in the interactions between plants and other living things. She is known for her lively and engaging lectures and workshops on growing and propagating native plants, and offers interesting, nuanced information on the complex issues facing native plants and native plant communities.