Earlier this month, CLC GIS Director Sean Bloom and James Padgette from the North Carolina Natural Heritage Program discovered a 19-acre population of the federally threatened Dwarf-flower Heartleaf.
We were aware that the threatened flower was growing on one of our conserved properties in Lincoln County. James, who is studying and surveying the heartleaf, wanted to monitor what was thought to be an one-acre site of the plant on the preserve. After a day of surveying, they found a little more than 19 acres in four different sections of the preserve. James is now working with the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the North Carolina Dept. of Transportation to establish a monitoring plot on the property for a three-year status review of the heartleaf. State-rare Milkweed Vine and Alternate Leafed Dogwood populations were also found.
Also this spring while monitoring a property in Gaston County, CLC Stewardship Associate Andy Kane found more Alternate Leaf Dogwood shrubs. The plant is rare in the Southern Piedmont and this find is one of only five plant populations in Gaston County. The presence of this plant means the area is extremely rich and probably holds other special wildlife habitats waiting to be found.
“When we find rare or threated plants on our properties, we know we are doing the right thing,” said Sean.
Over the next several weeks, CLC staff will collect specimens to press and submit to local herbariums to document these rare finds on our conserved lands!