Photo by Catherine Flanagan

Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida)

Eupatorium at Bull Run

Eupatorium at Bull Run

Eupatorium at Bull Run

Photo by Brigitte Hartke

Photo by Brigitte Hartke

Photo by Brigitte Hartke

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News & Updates

Please Note:  All John Clayton Chapter walks have been cancelled until further notice.

The John Clayton Chapter of the Virginia Native Plant Society was chartered in June of 1984 and was named in honor of the colonial botanist, John Clayton. Our membership includes beginners as well as professional botanists, novice and experienced gardeners, and folks who just like to walk and see some wildflowers and trees.

We present educational programs at our meetings, as well as to schools and civic organizations, conduct fieldtrips and workshops, participate in plant rescue and relocation, work on conservation projects, publish a bi-monthly newsletter, and have displays for libraries, schools, and events. We hold a native plant sale in April every year.

The John Clayton Chapter includes Gloucester, Mathews, Middlesex, James City and York Counties, as well as the Cities of Williamsburg, Hampton, Newport News and Poquoson.

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Skunk Cabbage February 2020 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | June 7, 2020

    by Helen Hamilton, John Clayton Chapter   Poking up through the snow is a purple-brown and green mottled hood, which is a modified leaf, 2–5 inches long. Inside is a nearly round flower head with many small, tightly packed individual flowers. They “bloom” when stamens emerge above the four tiny sepals. After the…

Witch Hazel January 2020 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | January 18, 2020

By Helen Hamilton John Clayton Chapter, Virginia Native Plant Society This low-branching shrub or small tree can furnish year-round interest, with winter-blooming flowers. From late fall and into winter, fragrant yellow flowers, each with four, crinkly, ribbon-shaped petals, grow in clusters close to the stem.  Throughout the summer the branches are covered by broad, slightly…

Winterberry Dec 2019 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | November 30, 2019

Winterberry  (Ilex verticillata) by Helen Hamilton John Clayton Chapter, Virginia Native Plant Society Truly a spectacular sight in winter – long whips of red berries against a white background, or any place where a spot of bright red is welcome. This holly loses its leaves in late fall and until eaten by songbirds, the glossy…

New York Ironweed September 2019 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | September 16, 2019

New York Ironweed (Vernonia noveboracensis) by Helen Hamilton John Clayton Chapter VNPS These are handsome, robust plants with stunning floral color. The sturdy stems grow three to ten feet tall and maintain an upright posture throughout the fall. Leaves are lance-shaped and finely toothed. The intense deep purple flowers bloom from late summer to early…

Deerberry June 2019 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | July 23, 2019

June Wildflower of the Month By Helen Hamilton    Deerberry is a member of a large genus which includes blueberries, and cranberries. This species is a tall (to 10 feet) deciduous shrub with variable foliage, mostly egg-shaped. Leaves are thin and not toothed, typically whitish underneath. Unlike the closed, tubular buds and flowers of blueberry,…

Rose-Mallow August 2019 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | July 23, 2019

by Helen Hamilton, John Clayton Chapter  The wide showy flowers of Rose-Mallow signal the start of summer, as they bloom profusely in moist areas until September.  Each flower is open for only a day, but they follow sequentially over time. The bloom is a larger version of okra, cotton or hollyhocks which are also members…

Ferns Mosses and Forest Plants

By Catherine | July 22, 2019

Deerberry

By VNPS Communications | May 23, 2019

Wildflower Spot– June 2019 By Helen Hamilton DEERBERRY Vaccinium stamineum Photo: Phillip Merritt Deerberry is a member of a large genus which includes blueberries, and cranberries.  This species is a tall (to 10 feet) deciduous shrub with variable foliage, mostly egg-shaped.  Leaves are thin and not toothed, typically whitish underneath.  Unlike the closed, tubular buds…

Yellow Trout Lily May 2019 Wildflower of the Month

By VNPS Communications | May 19, 2019

  By Helen Hamilton   In early spring, look for a bright yellow flower, drooping towards the ground (“its eyes look downwards”).  Each stem is only 4-6 inches tall with a solitary flower on top.  A member of the lily family, the trout lily has flower parts in threes, i. e., 3 yellow “sepals” and…

Virginia bluebells April 2019 Wildflower of the month

By VNPS Communications | April 16, 2019

Virginia Bluebell, Virginia cowslip (Mertensia virginica) by Helen Hamilton,  John Clayton Chapter Virginia Bluebell is a beautiful spring wildflower that produces funnel-form pendant flowers beginning as pink but then turn blue as the flowers open. They are pollinated by bees that are large enough to push their way up the tube, and more commonly by butterflies…