Local Chapters:  

Coeur d' Alene

Calypso Chapter of INPS

Elected Officers   

Derek AntonelliPresident(208) 762-2575
Karen WilliamsSecretary(208) 667-8790
Janet BenoitTreasurer(208) 683-2407

The Calypso Chapter of the Idaho Native Plant Society meets on the first Wednesday of March, April, May and October. The Chapter schedules field trips during the Spring, Summer, and Fall. The Calypso Chapter of the INPS was founded in 1991. We continue our efforts in promoting interest in native plants and native plant communities, collecting and sharing information on all phases of botany concerning these flora. Membership is open to all interested in the native plant community.

Upcoming Meetings

Wednesday, March 6, 2013 
at 7:00 p.m. at Idaho Fish and Game office at 2885 W Kathleen Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID.  Determine field trips for the upcoming season. Presentation on Hager Lake Vegetation Study.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013  at 7:00 p.m. at Idaho Fish and Game office at 2885 W Kathleen Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID.  Program to be determined. Presentation: Tentatively on the characteristics of the Lily Family.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013  at 7:00 p.m. at Idaho Fish and Game office at 2885 W Kathleen Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID. Program to be determined. Presentation: Possibly on the characteristics of the Rose Family

Past Meetings

Wednesday, March 7, 2012  at 7:00 p.m. at Idaho Fish and Game office at 2875 W Kathleen Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID.  There will be a presentation of photographs from 2011's field trips.  Field trips for 2012 will be planned.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012  at 7:00 p.m. at Idaho Fish and Game office at 2875 W Kathleen Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID.  Program to be determined.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012  at 7:00 p.m. at Idaho Fish and Game office at 2875 W Kathleen Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID. Program to be determined.


Past Field Trips and Events 

Annual INPS Meeting, Friday-Sunday, June 22-24, 2012, Clark Fork Drift Yard Access Site between Hope and Clark Fork.





Past Newsletters

                   Calypso Companion                   March 30, 2010, Vol. 19.2

Newsletter yearly subscription:  Members -- $6, Non-members--$8


Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, April 7, 2010 , at 7:00 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d’Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.)  Please do not park in the doctor’s parking area.  

Derek is going to present on the Pack River delta rehabilitation.



Minutes of the March 3, 2010 meeting

Meeting opened at 7 P.M. by Vice President, Roland Croft.

Bob Lee who had been President for the past several years resigned resulting in our VP taking over his duties. A motion was made by Laura Asbell to approve the minutes as published in the newsletter.  The motion passed.  

Derek Antonelli is to give a presentation at the next meeting.

Field trips were discussed with the following results:  April 24 will be joining with the Audobon Society on a field trip to Hogg/Fishtrap Lake.  

Liberty Lake on May 16. Meeting at Walgreens at 8 a.m. and then all together at the Safeway parking lot in Liberty Lake at 8:30 - 8:45 a.m.

It was suggested we each bring 2 ideas for field trips to the next meeting.  A Forest Service Map will be brought to the meeting so we can mull over some new areas to explore.

Regarding Cottonwood; Janet Benoit will contact LeAnn Abell about when we can all get together for that outing.

The Annual Meeting is June 11 and 12th.

A thank you gift card was suggested and approved for our appreciation to Bob Lee's service as President.  He will be sorely missed by all.

It was decided that we would transmit our Calypso news letter via email to those members whose email addresses we have.

Meeting adjourned at 8:30.

Field Trips

Tubbs Hill, Saturday, April 17, 2010.  Meet at the 11th street parking lot at 9:00 a.m.  Depending upon circumstances, we sometimes go to lunch afterwards.

Hog Lake, Saturday, April 24, 2010.  Joint meeting with the Audubon Society.  Meet at Walgreens parking lot at a time to be determined.  

Mineral Ridge, Sunday, May 2, 2010,Meet at Walgreens parking lot at 8:00 a.m.  

Liberty Lake, May 16, 2010.  Meet at Walgreens at 9:00 a.,m. or in the Safeway parking lot in Liberty Lake at 9:30-9:45 a.m.  Directions to park:  Head south on Liberty Lake road and travel approximately 1 mile to Sprague Ave.  Turn left on to Sprague, after 1 mile Sprague becomes Neyland Rd.  Stay on Neyland, after 7 tenths miles Neyland becomes Lakeside, veer right onto Lakeside.  After 8 tenths miles on Lakeside, you will see the park sign on the right hand side pointing you down Zephyr road to the park entrance.

Roman Nose Lake, July 25, 2010.  Meet at Walgreens at 7:30 a.m.

For all field trips pack a lunch, wear sturdy hiking shoes and clothing prepared for anything.  Roman Nose in particular can sunshine, rain, hail, snow, be hot and cold.

Featured Plant

Like other wild flowers such as yellow bells and buttercups, the Ballhead Waterleaf (Hydrophyllum capitatum)  blooms in early spring while the ground is still moist.  The loosely hairy perennial is 10-40 cm tall, with a short, deep rootstock and slender fleshy roots.

The leaves atop long stalks are large and divided into 5-7 lobes, each of which may be further lobed. The flowers mass in an appealing ball of purplish blue or violet and sometimes white blooms made misty by a large number of stamens protruding beyond the corolla.  The inflorescence is a compact round head on a short stalk, rarely over 2” long.  The individual flowers are funnel-shaped with style and stamens protruding.  The fruits are capsules.

The plants are scattered and infrequent at low to mid elevations in thickets, grasslands, woodlands and moist slopes.

Ballhead is a translation of capitatum and refers to the lovely, rounded heads of flowers.  “Waterleaf” is a direct translation of the Greek, hydro (water) and phyllos (a leaf)

The Ballhead Waterlead can be distinguished from the phacelias by its fuzzy, ball-shaped inflorescence.

When young, these succulent “waterleaves” make excellent greens.  Native peoples also ate the roots.  They also used the plant for medicine, especially for combating diarrhea.

References available by request.


                  Calypso Companion                                       

April 26,2007, Vol. 16.3


Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, May 2, 2007, at 700 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d'Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.)  Please do not park in the doctor's parking area.  


Minutes of the March meeting

The meeting was called to order by President, Bob Lee, at 705 p.m.  The minutes were approved as printed in the Calypso Companion newsletter.  

Old Business

Additional field trips were discussed.  Another field trip was decided upon for Saturday, July 28, 2007, to Revette Lake.  Details are below. The Tubbs Hill walk was discussed.  Janet has the plant list.  There was also discussion about Marie Creek, Roman Nose Lakes, Snow Lake or McKinnick Trail for August.  A decision will be made at the May meeting.  

Phil is contacting the 6 local high school science departments about Native Plant Appreciation Week.  Janet has sent information to NIC for a display in the library.

Bob Lee mentioned the  feature article “Wildflowers in the Wilderness” in the 3-31-07 Spokesman-Review by Mike Broadwater, Spokesman Review correspondent.

The annual meeting at Craters of the Lake was discussed.  Several members present had previously been to this area.  

New business

There was a lengthy discussion of the proposed bylaw changes.  Janet is to incorporate the Calypso comments into an email to the committee members expressing our concerns.

Field Trips for 2007

Sunday, May 20, 2007.  Q'melin Trails, Post Falls. (Rain or Shine) Meet at 1 p.m. at South West Parking Lot entrance. Potluck to follow, at Patron members Dr. Laura and Bill Asbell's residence, Post Falls.

Saturday, June 9, 2007.  Tweet- Scout Trail, near Farragut State Park, Bayview, Idaho. Meet at 8 a.m. at Walgreen's, Coeur d'Alene, Southwest corner of parking lot. About a 5 hour hike--bring lunch and water. Moderately difficult. (This was a success at the 2006 State INPS Annual Meeting.)

Sunday, June 24, 2007.  Gamlin Lake, near Sagle, Idaho. Meet at Walgreen's, Coeur d'Alene, 8 a.m. A very easy hike.

Saturday, July 28, 2007, Rivette Lake, near Murray, Idaho (High elevation, 4 mile hike, moderately difficult.) Approximately 40 miles from the Kingston, Idaho exit on I-90.  Car pool from Walgreens, Coeur d Alene, 730 a.m.  We will hike as far as the group wants, then return.  Sturdy walking shoes, layered clothing, sack lunch and water.

Saturday, August 18, 2007, Roman Nose Lake, near Naples, Idaho.  Meet at Walgreens parking lot at 730 a.m. to carpool. Otherwise meet at the lower lake at 1000 a.m.  Bring a sack lunch, water and wear layered clothing.  Weather is always uncertain.

Saturday, September 8, 2007, Benoit property, near Careywood, Idaho.  Meet at Walgreens at 800 a.m. to carpool or else be to the house at 900 a.m.  We will look for fall plants and look at seed pods. Pot luck for lunch.  Janet will furnish hamburgers, plates and silver.

Field trip lists are to be brought current.

Field Trip Summary

A total of 26 people came on the Tubbs Hill walk on Saturday, April 21, 2007.  Three people from Calypso came, four from Kinnikinnick Chapter, two honor students from Mr. Cosette's Post Falls High School biology class, and a group of four people from a hiking club in Liberty Lake.  The other people were from the local area. Most people came in response to an article in the Spokesman-Review about the hike.  The 2003 plant list was distributed.  Several additions were made to the list.  The Mertensia longiflora was particularly noticed for its reappearance this year.  This plant has not been in any abundance for the last several years.  There were several patches of Calypso bulbosa noted on the north side of the hill.  Besseya rubra was noted in locations on the hill where it had not been noted before. This plant seemed to be particularly abundant.   Although not quite in bloom, Trllium petioletum was found once again. After the walk, a number of people went to Michael D's for lunch and companionship.  

Featured Plant

The Twinflower (Linnaea borealis) for all its diminutive size is classified as a trailing shrub or sub shrub.  As a member of the honeysuckle family, twinflower is a semi-woody plant which can form dense mats.  This plant prefers moist shady evergreen forest locations.  The one-half inch leaves are opposite, firm, shiny, broadly elliptical with a few shallow teeth along the upper half.

The flowers are pink, trumpet-like or funnelform and nodding borne in opposite pairs on a slender y-shaped stalk originating in the leaf axils.  The fragrant flowers are lifted no more than 10 cm. on bare stalks.  The five-lobed corolla is hairy within the throat. The beautiful bell-shaped twin flowers of Linnaea produce a very fragrant perfume. The two pairs of stamens have one pair shorter than the other.  The calyx is five-cleft with lanceolate teeth.  Blooming period is May to August, according to altitude.

The fruits are dry nutlets with hooked bristles.  These one-seeded capsules readily catch on fur or feathers for distribution.  

This circumboreal plant is very common at low elevations to timberline in open to closed mossy forests, openings, clearings and wetlands. The plant does not spread into dry, hot areas.  Its preference is for partially shaded to deeply shaded sites, and it tends to spread rapidly but not aggressively.  This characteristic makes it a good candidate for a groundcover in a shade garden in your yard. Twinflower is easily propagated through layering.  It spreads naturally by horizontal stems on the surface of the organic layer of the forest floor.  Linnaea often increases with a light disturbance following logging.

The plant leaves can sometimes be mistaken for wintergreens (Pyrola spp.) or bearberries (Arctostaphylos spp.) which have alternate evergreen leaves.  Linnaea is also unpalatable, which increases its suitability for garden or groundcover plantings where you might have deer or other wildlife predation.

Linnaea was named for Carolus Linnaeus (1707-1778) and is said to have been his favorite flower.  Linnaeus was professor of medicine and botany at Uppsala University in Sweden from 1742 until his death.  In 1753, he wrote Species Plantarum, the basis for our present binomial system of naming plants by genus and specific epithet-the scientific name.


Bibliography available by request.

Calypso Companion September 2006

Calypso Companion 

March 30, 2006, Vol. 15.3


Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, May 3, 2006, at 700 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d'Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.)  Please do not park in the doctor's parking area.  

Come prepared to discuss any additional Calypso field trips and dates.  The program will be looking at the plant collection Bob Lee has accepted on behalf of the chapter.  Bring your field guides to the meeting to identify some of the specimens.

Minutes of the March meeting

President Bob Lee called the meeting to order at 700 p.m.  Minutes were approved as written in the Calypso Companion.  The Treasurer's report was approved.

Old Business  Annual Meeting--We still need some botanists to lead some of the field trips.  Reservations are now being accepted.  If you plan to attend, please contact Janet.  There is to be a notice in Sage Notes when it comes out.  Several people have already made reservations.  This is a tenting campground with a very few spots for small camper trailers.  The fee of $12.50 is for dinner.  This includes the meal, tax and gratuity.

Friends of Tubbs Hill Foundation, Inc. let them know about upcoming Tubbs Hill field trip(rain or shine). Discussion about contacting a possible Forest Service Botanist(Val Goodnow?) of Fernan Ranger District, for our May 13, 2006, Tweet Scout Trail exploratory hike. Val gave a presentation on the 8 Hucklelberry species(Vacciniums) of North Idaho at a previous Chapter meeting,. That newsletter back issue available in Chapter archives, if anyone is interested in a copy.

New Business  Sage Notes--when will it be published again?  Next Board meeting?  April,  at Janet's  (This will be the usual telephone conference). Conservation process--should the INPS be involved in litigation , in defense of native Plants?

At the May 3, 2006 Chapter business meeting we will discuss this proposal--a clear change may change non-profit status of the INPS.

Bob Lee informed the Chapter of a  pressed wildflower collection of Sharon Mathers' grandmother, from Rathdrum, from around 1906, that the Chapter was offered as a gift.  Sharon currently resides in Pioneer, California . The Rathdrum Historical Society had apparently not expressed an interest in taking the collection for their Museum. Sharon claimed her mother was 20 years old in 1906.  (I loaned my 1893 Wildflower book to Bob Lee to bring to the meeting to see what plants names have changed, etc.,) Janet has received some e-mail from Peggy Faust's son-in-law who wants information on plant viewing sites in the Panhandle.  She is to forward these e-mails to Bob.

The program "A Plant Walk With Mors Korchanski" (Vol. 2) was then shown . The habitat we encountered in this video was Sub Alpine( 5500-6000 feet, from the upper edge of the Montane Forest to the edge of the Treeless Forest) Some of the plants discussed were Death Camas, (common sub-alpine), Wood Betony, Lousewort, Alpine Rock Jasmine, Cusick's Paintbrush (a semi-parasitic plant), Columbine, Lance-leaved Stonecrop,Alpine Goldenrod, Monkshood, (toxic!), Moss Campion,  Wooley Lousewort and a number of other plants.

Annual Meeting Reminder

Annual Meeting is June 23-25 at Farragut State Park.  Calypso Chapter is lead chapter working with Kinnikinnik and White Pine Chapters to put on this event.   We have Larch Campground reserved with a limit of 50 people camping.  Some people may want to come just for the day. Reservations for the meeting need to be to Janet by June 1, 2006.

The following is the schedule as we currently know it.

Friday  Arrive, sign in, set up camp and become familiar with the area.  Visit the Farragut museum.  Campfire get acquainted get together s'mores, etc. in the evening.  

Saturday  800 a.m. Welcome to Farragut State Park by Ranger Dennis Woolford

830 a.m. Divide into field trip sections.

845 a.m.  Weeds of Farragut field trip with Nina Eckberg, Superintendent, Kootenai County Noxious Weed Control

845 a.m.  Loop field trip led by LeAnn Eno/Abell

845 a.m.  Tweete/Scout Trail day long field trip, Bob Lee, Guide. Wear sturdy walking shoes, appropriate clothing, carry a sack lunch and water.

11;45 a.m. Weeds and Loop field trips return to camp for lunch on your own.

100 p.m.  Repeat morning Weeds and Loop field trips, switching participants

630 p.m.  Catered no host meal.

700 p.m.  Short annual meeting.

730 p.m. Rocky Mountain Lake Ecology by Dr. Fred Rabe, U of I.

Sunday  830 a.m.  INPS committee meetings

People can hike some of the trails they missed or prepare to return home.

100 p.m. Board telephone conference. 

Field Trip Report

Tubbs Hill-- A small group of people met at the 11th street parking lot for a quick (for us) walk on Tubbs Hill.  Most of the plants were not as far along as they have been in years past.  The most prominent plants were the Glacier Lily (Erythronium grandiflorum), Spring Beauty (Claytonia lanceolata) and Grass Widow (Sisyrinchium angustifolium). Fritillaria pudica, yellow bells, were seen in the fields of Glacier Lily.  There were only a few Dodocatheon spotted.  The Arrow Leafed Balsam Root (Balsamorhiza sagitiata) were just beginning to flower. No Mertensia were seen.  The Serviceberry  (Amelanchier ainifolia) were not yet in bloom.  Prairie Smoke (Geum triflorum) were not even to bud stage yet.

The weather was threatening, but not raining enough to dampen our spirits.  Kinnikinnik members, Sylvia Chatburn and Marilyn George joined us as did the Shocks.  We met at Michael D's afterwards to have lunch, and socialize.

Field Trips

Tweete/Scout Trail exploratory hike 800 a.m., Saturday, May 13, 2006, meet at Walgreens parking lot to carpool.

Q'melin Trails, 100 p.m., Sunday, May 21, 2006 (rain or shine--note no rain date like in years past) meet at Trailhead next to Parking Lot.

Gamlin Lake, near Sagle, Idaho, Saturday, June 3, 2006, carpool from Walgreens  Parking lot, Hwy 95 and Appleway, Cd'A, at 8 a.m. or meet at Gamlin lake at 9 a.m.

Mt. Spokane State Park, Spokane, Wa. , Saturday, July 15, 2006, meet at Walgreens, Cd'A, Idaho at 730 a.m. to carpool,  or at Mt. Spokane State Park at 9 a.m.

Roman Nose Lakes, 25 miles from Naples, Idaho, Saturday, August 12, 2006, meet at Walgreens, Cd'A, at 630 a.m. to car pool or at the lower lake at 900 a.m. (this could be an over nighter).

Skunk Cabbage, or swamp lantern (Lysichiton americanum) is named for the rank pungent odor which is exuded when the leaves are bruised. The flowers also stink.  Some people think that the flower scent is very sweet and although rather sickish, not excessively unpleasant. The older or wilting flowers, however, have the rather pungent scent the plant is named for.  The genus name Lysichiton is from the Greek lysis (loosening) and chiton (a tunic) and refers to the spathe.  The name swamp lantern comes from the fact that the spathes glow so brightly in the dark woods in contrast to the deep green of the leaves.

The flowers are on an upright, cylindrical, cone-like, fleshy spike (spadix) that resembles a corn cob.  The spadix is enclosed in large, showy, yellow or cream-colored, sheathing bract that eventually falls away.  The mature spadix is club-like, 6-8 cm thick and up to 30 cm long.  The flowers are actually tiny, yellowish green that can number in the hundreds. The fruits are 1-2 seeded greenish to reddish berry-like and pulpy.

The leaves are fleshy, ascending. lance-shaped to oblong/oval 10-150 cm long.  Leaf stalks can be very short giving the impression that blades grow directly out of the soil.  Blades can also be attached to long, fleshy stalks that grow up out of the muck.  The skunk cabbage can have the largest leaves of any species in the native flora of the Pacific Northwest.  

The skunk cabbage grows in wooded wetlands, swamps, marshes and wet meadows.  It is found from sea level to high-elevation forests.  Skunk cabbage remains fairly small when it grows in exposed areas, but when it is an understory plant in muddy-swamp-like conditions it can become massive.  

During winter the plant is not visible above ground, but in spring new growth quickly emerges from the crowns.  The plant blooms in early spring before the leaves appear.  The pungent odor of its flowers attracts flies and beetles as pollinators.

Skunk cabbage is a perennial native forb whose flower stalks and large, erect leaves grow from underground stems.  The roots are very hot and peppery, but bears and elk are fond of them.  Muskrat are also reputed to have eaten them.   Among the North Coast Indians the roots were an important article of diet, particularly in early spring when famine was threatening.

Some native people refer to skunk cabbage as “Indian wax paper” because all groups with access to the large shiny leaves traditionally used them in many of the same ways as waxed paper, such as lining food-steaming pits, and wrapping or covering food.  The Lil'wet'ul ate the rootstocks and their name for the plant means “hot” ( as in spicy).  Crystals of calcium oxalate in skunk cabbage leave a burning sensation in the mouth, but drying or roasting the root-stocks destroys the crystals.  The rootstocks were cooked by Native Americans in pits together with scrapings of the tender inner bark of hemlock.  Ointments prepared from the rhizome have been used for skin tumours, ulcerous sores and ringworm.

There is a Kathlamet Indians have a myth concerning the skunk cabbage. In ancient days, they say, there was no salmon.  The Indians had nothing to eat save roots and leaves.  principally among these was the skunk cabbage.  Finally the spring salmon came for the first time.  As they passed up the river, a person stood upon the shore and shouted “Here come our relatives whose bodies are full of eggs!  If it had not been for me all the people would have starved.”

“Who speaks to us?” asked the salmon.

“Your Uncle, Skunk Cabbage,” was the reply.

Then the salmon went ashore to see him, and as a reward for having fed the people he was given an elk-skin blanket and a war-club and was set in the rich, soft soil near the river.  here he stands to this day, wrapped in his elk-skin blanket and holding aloft his war-club.

Bibliography available by request.

Calypso Companion

Calypso Companion

Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, October 5, at 7:00 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d’Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.) Please do not park in the doctor’s parking area.

Please come prepared to discuss suggestions for the INPS annual meeting site, speakers, and field trip leaders. We will also discuss the liability waivers. Also come prepared to discuss the Calypso field trips and dates for next year. Since the next meeting will be in March, these dates need to be set now.

Minutes of the last meeting:

The May 4, 2005, meeting was called to order by President, Bob Lee. Election of Officers: The current officers were unanimously re-elected to serve next year.

Old Business: All field trips were confirmed.

New business: We discussed liability waivers for field trips as proposed by Pahove Chapter. The State organization has yet to decide if waivers will be required of all chapters.

We discussed the 2006 state INPS annual meeting. Every other year a north Idaho chapter is responsible for hosting this event with the assistance of the other two northern chapters. Kinnikinnik hosted in 2002 and White Pine hosted in 2004, making it Calypso’s turn to host in 2006. We are researching suitable sites for this meeting.

Program: Members brought in plants for identification. Among the plants brought in were: Henbit (Lamium amplexicaule), Dalmatian Toadflax (Linaria genistifolia ssp. dalmatica), Forget me not (Myosotis ssp.), Pokeweed (Phytolacca americana) and Buckhorn Plantain (Plantago lanceolata) Phil brought in the plant press that the late Kit Scates had collected and her widower, Harley Barnhart donated to the Calypso Chapter. Kit Scates was an internationally known mycologist who specialized in coral mushrooms (Ramarias ssp).

Field Trip Reports:

Q’emiln Trails-- A small group met at the trailhead. We reversed the usual direction of our walk. This made for a new perspective of the trails. Rain threatened during the walk, but did not materialize. Several members adjourned to the Asbell property for a pot luck. Prior to eating, Laura guided us around her property. The Asbell’s have done a lot of work in establishing a trail system throughout their property. They have also done extension identification of the native plants on their property. They are also trying to reestablish native plants that should be found on their property.

Kamiak Butte--Several members went to Kamiak Butte. We reversed the direction of walking the trail from the previous time we had been there. Several different kinds of wildflowers were found than last year. Some of the wildflowers found last year were not found this year. This made for an interesting field trip.

Kolvig Wetlands Property--Sandy very graciously hosted us on her property. She guided us along several trails to habitats ranging from swampy to very dry. Sandy’s property is situated on Granite Lake. The overflow creek from Granite Lake meanders through her property creating an extensive wetlands. The old Highway 95 still is visible on her property. The railroad moved its track after a dramatic wreck in 1967 from the trestle that crossed the creek on Sandy’s property. The old foundations of the trestle are still visible. A plant list was developed by Phil.

Roman Nose--This turned into a non-event from the Calypso viewpoint. No members were able to go. Members from WNPS and Kinnikinnik did go on the walk. Five people from Sandpoint came on Saturday: Steve, David, Molly, Margie and Helen. Dave Noble brought a friend, Johny, from Spokane, camping over Friday night. We hiked to both lakes, including the rock overlook and the scenic trail above the first lake. Many plants were past blooming, including the rhododendrons. Fair crop of huckleberries. Johny and Dave saw two moose, a cow and a bull, on separate occasions, within 50 and 20 feet respectively. No sign of bears.

It was windy, showery and cold Friday evening. Frost on the plants and car the following Saturday morning. Warmed up with clear sky by 9 AM. Pleasant warm day for a walk. This would be an interesting place to return to next year.

Dr. Rember’s--A total of 16 people made the annual pilgrimage to Dr. Rember’s fossil beds near Emerald Creek this September. Many fossils were gathered as usual. There were some exceptionally good fossils. One of the people took home a large almost complete Sycamore leaf fossil. Dr. Rember said he had never seen such a large leaf before. Another person took home a seed pod fossil from a Sweet Gum.

Dues are Due at the end of December. If you have not sent in your dues, please do so. Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus) is a delicious member of the rose family. The species name, parviflorus means small flowered, which is misleading since the flowers are quite large. The berries resemble flattened raspberries, but have their own distinct flavor.

The plant is shrubby, upright, smooth, three to eight feet tall. The bark is green on young shoots, becoming reddish-brown and flaky with age. The leaves are large palmately five-lobed; serrate; strikingly veined. The inflorescenbce is terminal, few-flowered. The Flowers are white perfect; one to two inches across. Th ey are in form much like an extremely fragile wild rose. The calyx is five-cleft. Petals are five; large; white; crepe-like. The stamens are numerous. The carpels are many. The fruit is a cap-like flat red edible berry. The habitat is open woods and brush tracts. It prefers the edges of roads or forest openings and creek bottoms. But this plant can be found in much drier sites.The blooming period depending upon the site is May through June. The flavor of the berry is also site dependent. Some people think the berry quite flavorful which others find the berry to be quite insipid.

Unlike most species of Rubus this species is not at all thorny or prickly. This leads us to one of the common uses of thimbleberry leaves which is woods type toiles tissue. The berry is food for bears in July and August. Native peoples ate the peeled young shoots raw or cooked with meat in a stew. The berries were eaten raw as they do not keep well in grease or by drying. The large maple like leaves were used as temporary containers to line baskets, to separate berries within the same basket or as a surface on which to sometimes dry the berries.

Related species include Salmonberry (Rubus spectabilis), black raspberries(R. leucodermis) and red raspberry (R. idaeus). References available upon request April 25, 2005, Vol. 14.2
Newsletter yearly subscription: Members -- $6, Non-members--$8

Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, May 4, at 7:00 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d’Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.) Please do not park in the doctor’s parking area. Please bring weeds you have identified or want to be identified. This is the last meeting of the season to conduct business. The next business meeting will be in October. Final field trip arrangements for the summer will be made.

Minutes of the last meeting

The April 6, 2005, meeting was called to order by President Bob Lee. Minutes were approved as written in the March Calypso Companion. The treasurer gave a report of $306.87 in the checking account. Old Business: The field trip to Sandy Kolvig’s property near Granite Lake on July 9 was confirmed. New Business: President Bob Lee reported the upcoming WNPS field trip to The Telford BLM site(7,000 acres) near Quincy, Washington. Vice President Roland Craft will call the Colville National Forest office to see what field trips/programs they are scheduling in the coming months. There was a brief discussion about Permission slips(waivers of liability)for future field trips. This issue has been brought up by the state organization. There was no decision by the Chapter about recommendations to the State INPS at the next Board meeting. The next meeting program was discussed. Bob Lee proposed a weed identification program, with members bringing a favorite weed or a few weeds to key out and discuss the qualities of. With no further business the meeting was adjourned for the program.

Program: The KSPS documentary Sculpted by Floods was shown. This discusses the circumstances that formed the unique scablands of central Washington which inflluences the types of vegetation that can grow there. The 12,000-15,000 year ago end of the last Ice Age brought the Cordillarian Ice Sheet to create an ice dam at Pend Oreille Lake, Idaho, approximately where present day Clark Fork Dam is located. 520 cubic miles of water backed up creating Glacial Lake Missoula. When this ice dam was breached, a wall of water, ice, rock and mud up to 2,200 feet high, traveling up to 70 mph, would carve out its path to the Pacific Ocean. This path led the water through the Scablands of Eastern Washington, the Columbia basin and down the Columbia River Gorge to the ocean Geologists estimate this ice dam would buildup and then break over 100 times during the ice age.

J. Harlen Bretz, a geologist, viewed the topography near the Lower Grand Coulee before WWI and argued that the Channeled Scablands of Central Washington were created by water, yet he could not provide a source for this water erosion. Geologist Joseph Pardee argued a great lake once existed near modern day Missoula, Montana. Pardee shared his threory with Bretz in 1910. Bretz never connected Pardee’s theory with the creation of the Channeled Scablands. Pardee presented his findings about Glacial Lake Missoula in 1940 at the Geological Survey Meeting in Seattle. Pardee’s arguments were so persuasive he received an ovation at the end of his presentation.

A number of scientists have since worked diligently at unraveling the geologic puzzle. Turbidity currents show that at least 12 glacial flows have made it to the ocean floor off the coast of modern day Portland, Oregon.

The Ice Age Floods Insitutute is hoping to establish an interpretive trail crossing 4 states to commemorate these geologic events. The contact is: Ice Age Floods Institute, 324 W. Pioneer Way, Moses Lake, Washington 98837, 1-800-992-6234, or www.iceagefloodsinstitute.org.

Calypso Field Trips Q’emiln Trails-- 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 15, 2005, meet at the trailhead. This will be followed by a 4 p.m. pot luck on the Asbell property. To find directions to the Asbell property go to www.asbellgroup.com. If you plan to come to the potluck, please let Laura know so they know how many hamburgers to prepare. Kamiak Butte--7 a.m. on Saturday, June 4, 2005, at the Fernan Ranger Station to carpool down. Marie Creek--8 a.m. on Saturday, June 18, 2005, at the Fernan Ranger Station to carpool Kolvig Wetlands Property--10. a.m. on Saturday, July 9, 2005. Bring a brown bag lunch and drink as you might want to spent quite a bit of time at this interesting site. To reach Sandy’s property go north on Hwy 95 approximately 4 miles north of Athol. There is a long hill you go down. Just before you start to go up the other side, there is a sign “Left Turns Ahead.” Put on your left blinker. A blue sign says Kelso Lake 3. Take the gravel road to the left. Follow the gravel road across the railroad tracks. To the left is a mobile home. Just past that turn left. Do not turn into the mobile home, but continue down the “trail” through what looks like a gate in the barbed wire fence and continue to the end. Roman Nose-- 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, August 13, 2005, at the lower lake. This is a joint field trip with the Kinnikinnik and Spokane chapters.

Field Trip Reports: Tubbs Hill The Tubbs Hill field trip was an interesting walk. An unexpected occurrence was that the plants on the hill are much later this year than usual. Plants that normally are past blooming were in full flower. Those that are normally in full flower were just starting to come into bud. The Glacier Lilies, Yellow Bells and Grass Widows were in full bloom. In several places these flowers presented a massive display of blooms in contrast to the green grass. The Chocolate Lily (Fritilleria lanceolatum) was conspicuous by its lack of blooming. The Arrowleaf Balsamroot were just coming into bloom. We did locate the Round-leafed Trilliums the club has been watching. The plants we found were just in flower bud with none to the blooming stage. Some of the pea vines were showing blooms. The Blue Bells (Mertensia ssp.) were few and far between. We found no Prairie Smoke buds or blooms--just the plants. Some Dodocatheons were in bloom. Five guests made the walk with club members. For part of the time we were also joined by a person from the Tubbs Hill support group. She took a number of pictures. A group picture was taken on top of the hill. After the walk, a number of us want to Michael D’s for lunch, fellowship and interesting conversation.

Hog Canyon/Fishtrap Lake A small group went to Hog Lake first. Then we went on the east side of Hog Lake to a large piece of state land that Bob Strong is familiar with. He said he thought it was about 640 acres. There were a lot of large ponderosa pines in there. Bob had measured some of them. They were over 4 feet through.

Dues are Due at the end of December. If you have not sent in your dues, please do so. You are officially in arrears as of April 15.

Goldthread, Canker-root, Mouthroot, Mouthwort (Coptis occidentalis) is a member of the Buttercup Family (Ranunculceae). Coptis was derived from the Greek kopto (cut), in reference to the cuts on the leaflets that form the lobes. “Goldthread” refers to the bright yellow inner bark of the roots, valued as an herbal medicine for treating mouth ulcers, healing cold sores, and improving digestion.

A related species, three-leaved goldthread (C. trifolia) is distinguished by having 3 leaflets that are not again appreciably lobed, much broader sepals, and hollow petals with a nectar gland on the tip. That species is found in the Northern Rockies of British Columbia and Alberta. C. trifolia was sold in druggist’s shops in the 1800’s as a mouthwash. An eastern related species is Coptis groenlandica. This species grows over New England and eastern Canada and as far south as North Carolina. Closely related species of Coptis are used as medicine in India and China. There it is used as a bitter tonic to stimulate the appetite. Goldthread is also used as a mouthwash to relieve thrush and other mouth disorders.

The shiny, evergreen leaves often form a deep green ground cover on the forest floor. The leaves are compound, having 3 leaflets; each with 3 primary lobes and a sharply toothed margin. The short-lived and inconspicuous flowers also occur in threes, in an open arrangement on the end of a stalk about 4-8” tall, or about the same height of the leaves. Each flower consists of 5-7 narrow, lancelike sepals and an equal number of petals. There is a small nectar gland near the base of each petal.

In the memoirs of Bastram and Marshall it is stated that John Elis, the eminent naturalist, in a letter to Linnaeus, dated London, April 25, 1758, says: “ Mr. Colden of New York, has sent Dr. Fothergill a new plant, described by his daughter (Miss Jane Colden). It is called Fibraurea, gold thread. This young lady merits your esteem and does honor to your system. She has drawn and described 400 plants in your method only. She uses the English terms. Her father has a plant called after him, Coldenia; suppose you should call this Coldenella, or any other name that might distinguish her amoug your genera.” Linnaeus, however, referred the plant to his genus Helleborus, and when it was subsequently ascertained to be distinct, Salisbury, regardless alike of gallantry and justice, imposed on it the name of Coptis. (Bibliography available on request.)

Old -- Minutes of the last meeting

The March 2, 2005, meeting was called to order by President Bob Lee. Minutes were approved as written in the December Calypso Companion. The treasurer’s report was given. We have $353.12 in the checking account. Old business was as follows: Roland Craft agreed to take the position of Vice President. Congratulations to Roland. We all wish him well. Proposed field trips were discussed. A motion was made by Janet B. and seconded by Laura Asbell that we adopt the following slate of field trips:

Tubbs Hill -- 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 9, 2005 at the 11th Street entrance. Rain or shine.

Fishtrap/Hog Canyon Lake -- 10 a.m. on Sunday, April 25, 2005, meet at the Global Credit Union at 3rd and Walnut in Spokane. Meet at 9 a.m. at Fernan Ranger Station to carpool to Spokane.

Q’emiln Trails -- 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 15, 2005, meet at the trailhead. This will be followed by a 4 p.m. pot luck on the Asbell property. To find directions to the Asbell property go to www.asbellgroup.com. If you plan to come to the potluck, please let Laura know so they know how many hamburgers to prepare.

Kamiak Butte -- 7 a.m. on Saturday, June 4, 2005, at the Fernan Ranger Station to carpool down.

Marie Creek -- 8 a.m. on Saturday, June 18, 2005, at the Fernan Ranger Station to carpool.

Roman Nose -- 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, August 13, 2005, at the lower lake. This is a joint field trip with the Kinnikinnik and Spokane chapters.

The motion was passed and so ordered.

Roland Craft is to ask the Audubon Society if they would like to join us for the Fishtrap/Hog Canyon Lake trip. We chose Sunday for this outing so as not to conflict with a Saturday Audubon activity. Roland is also going to ask if there are Audubon members that would like to go to Dr. Rember’s in September. A proposed field trip to Sandy Kolvig’s property on Granite Lake for July 9 was discussed. Phil is to contact her to inquire if this date would be suitable for her. Other proposed field trips were to go to Mineral Ridge or Coal Creek. This would depend upon whether the field trip to Sandy’s is able to be arranged.

Two videos on beavers were shown. The first was “Outwitting Maine’s Busy Beavers” by the Maine Department of Fish and Game. Beaver created wetlands are a problem in Maine. This video demonstrated live trapping, fencing and exclosure methods to benefit the landowners and keep the roads from flooding. These methods are used to maintain beaver habitat while protecting property owners rights and maintaining roads. Beaver flowages help fish, fresh water mussels, neo-tropical and wetland birds. One half of Maine’s osprey population nests in beaver flowages. Eighteen species of amphibians in Maine live in beaver flowages.

The second video was “My Forty Years With Beavers” by Dorothy Richards. This was a fascinating account of a couple’s lifelong effort to preserve beaver populations. This couple started by purchasing 80 acres of property beavers were found on. They continued to purchase more property throughout the 40 years ending with over 1,300 acres. Their sanctuary is at the edge of the Adirondack Forest in New York State. The Richards actually raised beavers in their home, releasing kits into the wild. The New York State Department of Conservation issued the Richards the only permit ever given to allow them to raise two unrelated kits. They continued to raise offspring from this original couple. Beavers possess the power to reason and work with Dorothy. Beavers, Wetlands and Wildlife is an all volunteer non-profit organization to carry on the Richard’s lifelong work. The goal of the organization is to help people live in harmony with beavers, and enjoy the great benefits of beaver wetlands. To attain this goal they advise people about problems and give programs and conferences to disseminate beaver information. For more information go to their website at beaverswww.org.

With no further business, the meeting was adjourned.

Dues are Due at the end of December. If you have not sent in your dues, please do so or come to the April meeting and pay there. You are officially in arrears as of April 15.

Please send to Calypso Chapter, INPS at P.O. Box 331, Careywood, ID 83809.

Calypso Chapter has a $6 newsletter fee in addition to the dues.

Other Chapter News

North Idaho Mycological Association -- next meeting is Thursday, April 7, 2005, at 7:00 p.m. at the Idaho Spokesman-Review Building. President is Rick Giles--phone 762-9074.

Kinnikinnik Chapter --next meeting is 9:45 a.m., Saturday, March 26, 2005 in the Community Hall on First Avenue (across from County Courthouse) Program will be “An Overview of the Kootenai National Refuge” The April meeting will be 9:45 a.m., Saturday, April 23, 2005, with a program of “Understanding Conservation Easements as Tools for Protecting Natural Resources”

Kinnikinnik Field Trips:

Birding with Earl Chapin at Kootenai Wildlife Refuge, Saturday, March 26. Mushrooming with Lori Carris at Round Lake, Saturday, April 30. Weeds with Rich Old at Waterlife Discovery Center, Saturday afternoon, May 28.

Shade gardening talk & moss video at Lois Wythe’s on Saturday, June 25. Wet forest habitat up Spar Creek to Little Spar Lake with Randy Beacham on Saturday, July 23.

Applied Forest Ecology/Succession with Chris Schnepf on Saturday, September 24.

Surprise field trip with Phil Hough at 10:00 a.m., Monday, October 10. Please contact Joyce Pence at joyceepence@hotmail.com (208) 266-1107 or Margareta Larson at natmeta@hotmail.com (208) 263-2253.

Epilobium angustifolium -- Fireweed, Great Willow Herb, Blooming Sally or Willowweed is in the Evening Primrose, Onagraceae family. The common name fireweed is derived from the fact that this plant is one of the early colonizers of burned over forest land and from the color of the flowers. The willow herb name comes from the fact that the leaves resemble those of the weeping willow. Epilobium is from the Greek epi which means “upon” and lobos which means “a pod”. Angustifolium means “narrow-leaved.”

Epilobium angustifolium is a circumpolar species which has been utilized in every country in which it is found. The plant is 3 to 9 feet tall. The leaves are alternate, narrowly lance shaped, short petioled, acute, simple. The stem grows from widespread horizontal roots. Flowering stems are usually unbranched. The rose to purple flowers are numerous, more than fifteen. The blossoms can measure almost 1 inch across. Petals are obovate and clawed. The four petaled flowers form an elongated spire-like raceme, the lower flowers blooming first. As a result, the plant may have long seed pods lower down, blooms in the middle with the tip still in bud. The seed pod is long and narrow 2-4 inches long. The pod splits in four segments releasing numerous hairy tufted seeds. There are eight stamens in two unequal sets. The stigma is four recurved lobes. The plant frequently grows in large patches. Preferred habitat is moist, rich soil in open woods, prairies, hills, and especially along streams, in damp places and disturbed areas. Flowering season is June, July and August depending upon site elevation and specific microclimate.

Related local species are: E. latifolium, E. paniculatum, E. suffruticosum, and E. adenocaulom. There are perhaps 100 species within this genus worldwide. There are approximately 25 species native to the Rocky Mountain region. Yellow Firewood, E. luteum is unique in having yellow blossoms. It is a common coastal mountain plant growing from Alaska to Oregon.

This widely distributed plant has many uses. The young leaves and shoots are edible and can be used as a pot herb. The young shoots can be boiled or steamed like asparagus. The mature plants can be gathered and the stem peelings dried and twisted into a type of twine. American coastal peoples used the twine in fishing nets. Northwest American interior natives used the plant externally as a treatment for eczema. The pith of the stem can be eaten raw. It is slightly sweet, tender and pleasant to the taste. The pith can also be used to flavor and thicken soups or stews.

The dried leaves are used as tea. In Russia they use the dried leaves of the fireweed. They call it Kaporie tea, and every year many tons of it are prepared and marketed. Even the wool from the seed pods has been used to a limited extent for padding and filling quilts, although it lacks the qualities to make it a really good fibre.

Fireweed is also a valuable range forage plant for livestock and game. It is eaten by deer, elk and grizzly bear. Flowers produce a lot of nectar which makes an excellent honey. Bee keepers hail its flowers as a blessing, knowing that where it abounds the hives will be filled with pure fragrant honey.

References: Rocky Mountain Wildflowers, Plants of Southern Interior British Columbia and the Inland Northwest, Wild Flowers of the Pacific Coast, and Edible native Plants of the Rocky Mountains. Full citations available upon request.

Older news:

Calypso Chapter INPS Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, March 2, at 7:00 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d’Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.) Please do not park in the doctor’s parking area. The program will be a video on Beavers and Wetland Habitat or the Lady Bird Johnson National Wildflower Research Center video.

Minutes of the last meeting

The October 6, 2004, meeting consisted of a short business meeting. Bob Lee graciously accepted the nomination for President. Eagle-eyed Bob has been a very active contributing member in Calypso Chapter and the Northeast Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society. Roland Craft said he would consider the position of Vice President. He will give his decision at the March meeting. Members discussed coordinating field trips with the Audubon Society. Calypso and Audubon collaborated on three very successful programs during 2004. Members have expressed a desire to return to Fishtrap/Hog Lake, Kamiak Butte and Dr. Rember’s private fossil property during 2005.

Field trips proposed for next year are: Tubbs Hill and Fishtrap/Hog Canyon Lake in April, Q’emiln Trails and Kamiak Butte in May, Marie Creek in June, July is open for suggestions, Roman Nose in August and Dr. Rember’s in September. Further suggestions for field trips are welcome. E-mail suggestions to Bob, Phil or Janet.

The Lady Bird Johnson National Wildflower Research Center video was not shown due to a technical glitch.

Committee Report

Lower Q’emiln Park Steering Committee-The final recommendations have been submitted to the Post Falls Park and Recreation Department Board and will be reviewed by the Post Falls City Council.

Field Trip Review

Please see your copy of the Fall 2004 Sage Notes or visit the web site at www.IdahoNativePlants.org for a concise review of most of our summer field trips. Any members not receiving the Sage Notes should contact Janet.

Additional Field Trip and Meeting Information.

Two joint Calypso/Audubon events took place at the end of September.
Dr. Bill Rember, University of Idaho geology instructor, presented a Monday evening slide show in Coeur d’Alene about the fossils in the Fernwood/Clarkia area. Dr. Rember wrote his doctoral thesis on the Clarkia fossil beds. Since that time he has purchased 10 acres of fossil containing ground in the Emerald Creek area and built his home near the digging pit.

The public fossil site near the motorcycle track was discovered in 1971. Dr. Rember subsequently found the site he now owns while doing his research. The fossils contained within this area are approximately 15 million years old. At that time, the climate of north Idaho resembled modern day North Carolina. Deciduous trees dominated the landscape. There were very few coniferous trees in the area. Pollen makes up a large proportion of the deposits. There were no grasses in this area during this period. The largest fossil mammal found in these beds is a beaver. There have been numerous fossil insects and fish found.

Plant materials are still evident in some portions of the site. Dr. Rember has devised a method to lift these plant materials from the surrounding rock for study. The mitochondrial DNA is often used to trace plant relationships. The stomata numbers indicate that the carbon dioxide level was much higher during the period when the fossils were laid down.

Nineteen people accepted the invitation to come to his property that Saturday, September 25 to dig fossils. The many fossils thrilled the field trip members. After lunch, Dr. Rember led a short walk through the mushroom laden woods. Phil Hruskocy, who also belongs to the mycological club, was able to identify some of the mushrooms. The beautiful Amanita was quite evident in its abundance.

A short geology road trip completed an event filled day. Dr. Rember pointed out the extent of the prehistoric Lake Clarkia in which the fossil deposits were laid down. He also pointed out two extinct volcanoes. One of these overlooks the present day town of Deary.

Dues are Due at the end of December.

Please send to Calypso Chapter, INPS at P.O. Box 331, Careywood, ID 83809. Rates are as follows:

Patron $35 Individual $15 Household $20 Student $ 8 Senior Citizen $ 8

Calypso Chapter has a $6 newsletter fee in addition to the dues.


Tall Larkspur (Delphinium glaucum) and Low Larkspur (Delphinium bicolor) are native to Idaho. Plant distribution for Tall Larkspur is Washington, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Colorado, California, Arizona, Alaska, British Columbia and Alberta. Low Larkspur occurs in Idaho, Montana, North and South Dakota, Wyoming, British Columbia and Alberta.

Tall Larkspur is found in subalpine forests and moist areas. Low Larkspur is found in dry montane areas in the valleys. Low Larkspur is usually less than 16” in height. Tall Larkspur can reach a height of 5’ or more.

Plant description: Larkspur ssp. are perennials in the Ranunculaceae family. They have irregular bluish purple to lavender, pale blue within blooms. The upper most sepal forms a long spur. Blooms are numerous in a long cluster. The mostly basal leaves are palmately divided or lobed into linear segments. There is a faint odor. The taste is bitter, then biting. All larkspur are poisonous to humans and livestock although sheep can eat them. Cattle are especially susceptible to the toxin. Why cattle are sensitive to larkspur poisoning is not understood. The alkaloid methyllycaconitine causes curare-like effects on the skeletal muscles and can cause motor paralysis, followed by death from asphyxiation (Nation et al. 1982, Cheeke and Schull 1985, Olsen and Manners 1989)

However, low larkspur is utilized by elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, pronghorn, upland game birds, small nongame birds, and small mammals. The palatability of low larkspur is rated fair for sheep and poor to fair for cattle and horses. Low larkspur is poor in protein and energy value. Low Larkspur is not noted for invading rangeland. Low larkspur is a native, perennial forb with an extensively branched fibrous to slightly fleshy root system. Stems are usually solitary and are 4 to 16 inches (10-40 cm) tall. Fruits are many-seeded follicles. Seeds are irregularly winged and about 0.08 inches (0.2 cm) long.

Low larkspur prefers sites with full sun exposure. It colonizes recently disturbed sites and is often found on gravel banks and along roadcuts. On alpine tundra sites of the Beartooth Plateau, Montana, low larkspur is associated with natural ground disturbance, such as areas of rodent activity.

Other common names for the Tall Larkspur are Giant, Dunce-cap, Mountain, Brown’s, and Western. Low Larkspur is also known as Montana Larkspur. Synonyms for Delphinium bicolor are Delphinium brownii and Delphinium cucullatum.

Native American tribes used the ground up flowers for blue dye. A concoction of compounds from the plant was used on arrowheads as poison. Medicine Men used it as an emetic for some ceremonies. The Hopi used the seeds in ceremonial rattles.

The blooms are used today as a beautiful blue color for silks and woolens for the textile industry. It is also used for blue writing ink. The United States Army during the Civil War used the flowers and leaves to kill lice.

References: Canadian Poisonous Plants Information System website, Native American Ethnobotany website, Northern Rocky Mountain Wildflowers, Indian Herbalogy of North America, Plants of Southern Interior British Columbia and the Inland Northwest. Full citations available on request.

Year End Review

The Calypso Chapter has had a very successful year thanks to all who have participated in the various activities. Membership has increased to 23 people. Several people have joined Calypso who also belong to the Coeur d’Alene Chapter of the Audubon Society. Joint efforts with the Audubon Society and with other INPS chapters have been quite successful. Joint sponsorship of a forest habitat field day with the University of Idaho was well attended.

Next year Calypso Chapter looks forward to continued association with other organizations for field trips and other learning experiences.

Happy New Year

Calypso Chapter INPS Next Meeting

The next meeting is Wednesday, October 6, 2004, at 7:00 p.m. at the Life Care Center, 500 Aqua Drive, Coeur d’Alene. (just West of Hwy. 95 and South of Prairie Ave.) Please do not park in the doctor’s parking area. The program will be a video on the Lady Bird Johnson National Wildflower Research Center. This video is courtesy of Bob Cardwell.

Minutes of the last meeting

The May 5, 2004, meeting consisted of a short business meeting. We discussed the INPS State Annual meeting. Election officers will be held then. Kristen Fletcher is not running for president this year. Hopefully, Steve Rust will be. We discussed the U of I Extension Forestry Habitat field day at Priest Lake on June 11, 2004. Sponsorship of this event by Calypso Chapter was voted on and passed. We also discussed the Bloom Peak field trip. A decision was made to have a chapter pot luck and field trip at Janet Benoit’s place. This also includes a possible side trip. Calypso Chapter is jointly sponsoring a talk by Dr. Bill Rember on Miocene fossils at the Audubon September meeting at 7:00 p.m., Monday, September 20, 2004 at the Presbyterian Church, 521 Lakeside, Coeur d’Alene. This will be followed by a field trip to Dr. Rember’s property that Saturday.

The program was a video “Wild Edibles” with Nancy Frank. The video covered a wide variety of plants including Morel mushrooms, cattails, high bush cranberries and the sugar maple. An emphasis was made that you should carefully study the plant in question, know what it is, specialize in a few plants, share expertise with others, know the endangered status and prepare the plants properly and try a small amount at first. This video is available through the Spokane County Library. Produced by Anderson Video Communications, Inc.

Field Trip Highlights Fishtrap/Hog Lake Field trip was a joint effort with the Audubon Society. Audubon Society members very helpfully pointed out bird species and Calypso Chapter members identified plant species for the group. A delightful time was had watching the antics of a pair of Northern Harriers. We also saw a Vesper Sparrow, a Yellow-Headed Blackbird and other species. We would like to have this trip again next year because of the variety of species found. Q’emiln Trails Field trip attracted a number of people from the Kinnikinnik Chapter. We identified several plants not on the current plant list. An updated list is in progress. Kamiak Butte Field trip was a big success. Nine intrepid people made the journey to the butte and walked the 2.5 mile loop. The views from along the trail and the top of the butte were spectacular. Species viewed included many we were unable to identify and a number of species were familiar. A “Plants of Kamiak Butte” list was distributed courtesy of Bob Lee. Eagle-eyed Bob Lee was the first to spot a Mountain Orchid (Cypridium montanum). A plant we were not familiar with Frasera fastigata was finally identified when we found one in bloom. The Clarkia pulchella population on the south side of the butte was in full bloom. The abundant rainfall in the last few weeks had assured a good bloom with just right conditions for the field trip. The plant list can be found at http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~wsherb/kamiak _genus.html. Members would like to do research into the plant list and return next year.

Confirmed Field Trips Marie Creek--10 a.m., Saturday, June 26, 2004. Meet at the Fernan Ranger Station for carpooling. The unusual “Phantom orchid” was sighted during our last trip there. This is a wet habitat type with some upland habitat.

Benoit Residence--7:50 a.m., Saturday, July 10, 2004, meet at Fernan Ranger Station to car pool to Janet’s property to be there by 9:00 a.m. Pot luck and short walks around Janet’s property in Careywood. Janet is providing hamburgers and place settings with members bringing pot luck. Directions: From Coeur d’Alene, go to Careywood Post Office; turn right on Bayview Rd.; Go 2 miles to County Rd 22 (wooden signpost); turn left onto County Rd 22; first driveway on right; follow main road past white house on left, road curves left and down the hill. The last time we saw a mountain orchid, wild hyacinth, rattlesnake plantain and many other species. We may decide to go to Farragut State Park or Granite Lake as a side trip.

INPS State Annual Meeting--July 16-18. 2004 at Beaver Creek Campground, Priest Lake. This should be a fun time. Many activities are planned. There are some unusual plants to be seen in this area. One of these is the Redwood violet (Viola sempervirens) which is a stoloniferous viola. A wonderful catered meal will be served Saturday evening (cost $9-13 depending upon menu and numbers). Dr. Steve Brunsfeld, U of I will give an illustrated talk; “The History of the Northern Rocky Mountain Mesic Forest Ecosystem.” Reservations must be to Al Stage 208 882-7492 or astage@moscow.com by June 30, 2004. Election of officers is scheduled for the general meeting on Sunday morning with the board meeting to follow at 1:00 p.m. Make reservations as early as possible so we can get a head count. Calypso members should have received a flyer in the mail. If you didn’t get one let Phil or Janet know and we will get one to you.

Bloom Peak--7:30 a.m., Saturday, August 14, 2004. Meet at the Fernan Ranger Station to carpool. Bloom Peak is a subalpine habitat 14 miles from Pritchard on logging roads. Dr. Rember--Joint meeting with the Audubon Society, 6:00 p.m., Monday, September 20, 2004. Dr. Rember will give a slide presentaton at the Monday evening meeting. This will be followed with a field trip to Dr. Rember’s property on Saturday, September 25, 2004. The number of people allowed on this field trip is limited to 15. If there is a big enough demand, a second field trip will be scheduled. A donation is requested. These field trips are dependent upon safe hiking conditions as determined by the fire danger during the summer.

Committee Report

Lower Q’emiln Park Steering Committee--The May 19 meeting was attended by Phil Hruskocy. The final draft of the committee is expected soon. The report has to go to Post Falls Park and Recreation Dept., Post Falls City Council. The new title is the Post Falls River Corridor Park System Report. The committee is discussing the future of the park and balancing the needs of all who use it.

Clarkia pulchella, Pink Fairies, Elkhorn, Deerhorn, Ragged Robin, Beautiful Clarkia

This genus is named for Captain William Clark (177 0-1838) of the Lewis & Clark Expedition. Clarkias were collected by Meriwether Lewis near present-day Kamiah, Idaho, on June 1, 1806. The site was near the Kooskooskee and Clark’s River. When this plant specimen was exmined in London by the German botanist Frederick Pursh, he found it to be so unique and new to botanical science that it did not fit any genus that was currently known. It is now in the Evening Primrose Family (Onagraceae). Pulchella means beautiful.

This bright and showy annual has pink flowers with 4 petals; each petal branching into 3 distinctive lobes. The branching of these petal lobes reminds one of the branching of an elk’s antlers, hence the name. Eight stamens are included in each flower, 4 fertile ones that produce pollen, and 4 smaller sterile ones. The stigma has 4 white, petal-like lobes that mimic a tiny flower. Common clarkia, C. rhomboidea, has 8 fertile stamens with petals that are not 3-lobed. Numerous narrow, linear leaves line the slender 4-20” tall stems. The stems are turned downwards while the flowers are in bud. As the flower blooms, the stems turn upwards. The plants sometimes grow as winter annuals, germinating with the fall moisture. In the spring and early summer, they grow rapidly, flower, produce seed, and die. They bloom in May and June.

Clarkia range is Southern British Columbia south through eastern Washington and eastern Oregon; east to Idaho and western Montana. They are opportunistic and are common between bunchgrasses; beneath bitterbrush, juniper, mountain snowberry and ninebark shrubland plant associations. The preferred habitat is dry to moist bunchgrass communities. In moist seasons bunchgrass slopes are given a pinkish cast by the profusion of the flowers.

References: Wildflowers of the Inland Northwest by Peggy Faust, Common Plants of the Inland Pacific Northwest by Charles Grier Johnson, Jr., and Northern Rocky Mountain Wildflowers by H. Wayne Phillips. Full Bibliography available on request.