Speaker Series

Due to Covid-19 restrictions we've taking the Speaker Program Virtual

Please note the unique webinar link contained within for each program description which will take you to the Zoom invitation or registration page.

Video of past "virtual" speaker programs can be found on our Yerba Buena Youtube Channel



December 9, 2021, THURSDAY 7:30 pm

Protecting San Francisco Bay from invasive Spartina

Speakers: Toby Rohmer and Lindsay Faye Domecus

Zoom Reservation Required: Link Here

San Francisco Bay is more than a defining geographic feature: it is home to hundreds of types of fish, birds, and other wildlife, and provides food and shelter to abundant resident and visiting wildlife. Many are unaware that the Bay, the largest estuary on the west coast of North America, is in a league with Chesapeake Bay on the east coast and the Mississippi Delta on the gulf coast. While humans appreciate its beauty and presence, millions of birds use the Bay as a critical stopover point on their migration along the Pacific Flyway each year, finding  food and shelter in the saltmarshes and tidal mudflats. But these places are under threat, not just from sea level rise but also from invasive plants. In the 1970s, well-meaning engineers planted Atlantic cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) for erosion control. Unfortunately, it began to spread, displacing the native vegetation, and altering vegetation communities. Since 2005, the Coastal Conservancy’s Invasive Spartina Project has used airboats, genetic testing, sophisticated GIS, and a lot of hard work to push back the invasive cordgrass. Learn about how hometown heroes are doing their part to address the global biodiversity crisis.

Toby Rohmer is the Monitoring Program Manager for the San Francisco Estuary Invasive Spartina Project and works for Olofson Environmental, Inc. Toby studied at UC Davis, where he did his master thesis on California Ridgway’s Rails, which included substantial field work and monitoring in SF Bay marshes with USGS and other partners.

Lindsay Faye Domecus is an Environmental Biologist at Olofson Environmental Inc. She started at OEI as a seasonal employee in 2017 after finishing her graduate degree in Environmental Science at San Francisco State University, where she studied environmental physiology. At OEI, Lindsay works on a variety of projects, including the Invasive Spartina Project, and spends most of her time working in the marshes of the San Francisco Bay Area.



January 13, 2022, THURSDAY 7:30 pm

Learn about favorite local native plants by using Calflora

Speaker: Cynthia Powell, Calflora Executive Director

Zoom Reservation Required: Link Here

Calflora’s plant database hosts over three million plant occurrences. As CNPS Chapter members, we are an extremely valuable source of plant distribution data in Calflora. Cynthia Powell, Calflora’a Executive Director, will go over how to use Calflora to learn about our regional plants, Calflora’s photo project, iNaturalist data feed, population monitoring tools, plus soil, water, and climate tolerances for specific plants.
This is an opportunity for you to get to know Calflora — a great resource for native plant fans!

Cynthia Powell: after 3 years as Calflora’s GIS Project Manager, Cynthia is now Calflora’s Executive Director. She graduated with her MS in GIS in 2010 forecasting Mokelumne River water supply based on MODIS remote sensing snow pack images. She’s been examining what was under that snow — plants — ever since. She now coordinates all Calflora programs, research, outreach, and advocacy, as well as fundraising and management.


February 10, 2022, THURSDAY 7:30 pm

Maximizing Habitat Values and Habitat Function in Urban Landscapes

Speaker: Pat Reynolds, California Native Grassland Association

Zoom Reservation Required: Link Here

Landscaping with native species and incorporation of habitat enhancement features within urban areas is a significant and underutilized conservation action that can effectively increase habitat values in the built environment. If designed properly, urban gardens can provide important habitat for beneficial insects including pollinators, improve water infiltration and retention, reduce irrigation requirements, help to combat climate change, and create resilient landscapes. Pat's presentation will focus on the steps that go into the design, implementation and maintenance of habitat gardens dominated by native herbaceous vegetation including the incorporation of habitat features to maximize ecological values and habitat function. He will also discuss some of the findings of a U.C. Davis class study that looked at the social and ecological ramifications of a habitat enhancement project that he leads in his South Davis neighborhood with hopes of inspiring others to implement similar neighborhood projects.

Pat Reynolds is the Director of River Partner’s Native Seed and Nursery Program, the former General Manager of Hedgerow Farms and a past Associate Restoration Ecologist at H.T. Harvey & Associates. He is a restoration ecologist with more than 30 years of professional experience in the design, implementation and monitoring of restoration projects including the effective use of native seed. Pat sits on the Yolo County Planning Commission and is the Restoration Ecologist on the Science and Technical Advisory Committee for the Yolo County Habitat Agency and on the Board of Directors for the California Native Grassland Association (CNGA).


We're pleased to share video links of  Susan Karasoff's (CNPS-YB Outreach chair) popular gardening series with the San Francisco Public Library

Colorful Year Around Gardening with San Francisco Native Plants

Shrubberies, Wind Screens and Ground Covers

Succulent Gardening with Kipp McMichael

Children’s Gardens with San Francisco Native Plants

Gardening for Biodiversity in San Francisco, October, 24, 2020

Shade Gardening with California Native Plants, September 26, 2020

Gardening for San Francisco’s Butterflies and Pollinators, August 22, 2020

Edible Native Fruits & Vegetables of San Francisco, July 25, 2020