Over 120 participants attended the 34th Annual Native Plant Workshop this year.  Evaluations were positive and the lectures were “great”.  Tom O’Halleran was on hand to briefly go over KSB’s mission to protect and sustain the unique scenic beauty and natural environment of the greater Sedona area.  Attendees were invited to join the organization and encouraged to attend the free Speaker’s Series.  

A big thank you to this year’s committee for the over 1000 volunteer hours needed to provide the community with this opportunity to learn about the native plants and the surrounding environment.  We thank David Faush for the well written articles we submitted for publicity.  We also wish to thank Dave Norton, Barbara Saul, Jim Johnson and Mark Munsell for their work on the day of the event.

npw committee pic

The seventh Norman B. Herkenham Award was presented to Jan Busco, a Grand Canyon National Park horticulturist.  This award recognizes individuals, businesses, or organizations that further the education and implementation of native plant landscaping.  While the Native Plant Workshop was originally created by one of the founders of Keep Sedona Beautiful, the late Maleese Black, Norm Herkenham ran the workshops for some 20 years.  He worked for the National Park Service and the Friends of the Forest and is known as the “Father of the Sedona Trail System.”

janice busco

Jan Busco has worked with western native plants for 30 years and is active in the local foods movement.  At Grand Canyon National Park, she leads the Vegetation Program for the recovery of the endangered plant, sentry milk-vetch, and for several large native plant restoration and landscape projects.  After graduation from Cal Poly, Pomona, she worked for a variety of organizations including the Arboretum at Flagstaff, nursery manager of Theodore Payne Foundation for Wildflowers and Native Plants in Southern California and the U.S. Geological Survey.  She holds a master’s degree in forestry from Northern Arizona University and has written three books on western native plants.  She divides her time between a home near Grand Canyon National Park and her home in Flagstaff where she grows native plants and edibles in a home nursery.

The first keynote was presented by The Slow Water Team of Marianna Hartsong and Ryan Matson . Their topic, PLANTING RAIN, explained their vision of planting small Green Infrastructures all over town to slow, plant and spread water, truly transforming our ecosystem, returning it to a hydrating rather than a dehydrating system.


Our second keynote and final speaker of the day was Agriculture and Natural Resources and County Extension Director for the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Jeff Schalau.  He spoke on BALANCING OUR GOALS: NATIVE PLANTS, WILDLIFE, FUNCTIONAL ECOSYSTEMS AND YOUR LANDSCAPE. Trying to be the best stewards of our beautiful area, this talk dealt with some of these conflicting goals as we work to create functioning native landscapes in the real world.

Seven hour-long workshops were offered with participants choosing two from this selection:

1. Carol Chambers:   Nocturnal Neighbors–Bats in Your Backyard

2. Loni Shapiro:  Successful Container Gardening for Veggies, Flowers, and Herbs

3. Dena Greenwood:   Attracting Birds to Your Backyard

4. Hattie Braun:  Native Plants 101

5. Jeffrey Adams:  Watershed Regeneration from the Ground Up (demonstration limited to 20 per session)

6. Feather Jones:  Native Plants of the High Desert, Their Medicinal and Cultural Uses

7. Tom DeGomez:   Bugs and Crud on Native Trees  

This year’s Silent Auction had over 75 items donated by various individuals and businesses in the community.  The selection went from a fused glass sculpture to brunch for two, gift certificates for restaurants, massages, facials, native plants, auto detailing, or framed photos.  There were jeep tours, hummer tours, pots, native plants and planter, a birdhouse, jewelry and gift baskets. We wish to thank our supporters for their generous donations.  



Jay’s Birdbarn had a full array of items including gardening books and other items from their store. jaysbirdbarn


Verde River Growers brought a good selection of native plants to take home and plant while Sedona Recycles set up their stations to help with the recycling efforts.  Thanks to Dena Greenwood, Shaun Symond and Alex Rovang for their support.



Advance tickets were $25 for KSB members and $35 for the general public. Included in the price of admission was breakfast savories donated by Wildflower Bread Company, coffee and tea, the two keynote speakers, a choice of two hour-long workshops from the seven offered, lunch donated by Weber’s IGA and the Silent Auction.  Kinetico supplied water stations to fill the plastic thermal glasses donated by Wildfower Bread Company.    

We look forward to next year’s event scheduled for March 8, 2014.

Keep Sedona Beautiful, Inc., acting through the stewardship of its members and volunteers, is committed to protect and sustain the unique scenic beauty and natural environment of the Greater Sedona Area.