students placing plants in garden bedStudents add plants native to the Carolinian ecosystem to the garden atop the Centre for Engineering Innovation.

Tour to launch rooftop garden of native plants

Four ecosystems native to our region are represented in plantings atop the Centre for Engineering Innovation, and a launch event Thursday, Sept. 28, will introduce the garden to the campus community.

The project aims to educate, highlight, and provide better access to native species, says Cameron Proctor, an assistant professor in the School of the Environment.

“We envision the garden as a learning space and key infrastructure to help spread native seeds,” Dr. Proctor says. “Student volunteers in the Jull Environment Club will collect seeds of each species for distribution to the local community and propagation in varied spaces.”

Plants in each of the ecozones are:

  • Canada wild rye, pale coneflower, Ohio spiderwort, wild bergamot, switchgrass, butterfly milkweed, and Missouri ironweed in the Prairie;
  • wild lupine, dwarf blazing star, New Jersey tea, balsam ragwort, Pennsylvania sedge, wild columbine, and black-eyed Susan in the Oak Savanna;
  • Canada mayflower, wild ginger, spinulose woodfern, wild geranium, bloodroot, hairy Solomon’s seal, and Jack-in-the-pulpit in the Carolinian; and
  • sensitive fern, marsh fern, blue flag iris, cardinal flower, turtle head, ostrich fern, Michigan lily, and royal fern in the Wetland.

Learn more about the native plant garden here.

The Sept. 28 launch event will feature a tour, snacks, and prize draws from noon to 2 p.m. Access to the garden is available on the west side of the building’s third floor.