Latin for Gardeners: Test Your Knowledge

December’s Native Maryland Plant: All of them!

Hello Master Gardeners and Watershed Stewards!

Winter is finally here, it’s time to take a rest from gardening, to enjoy the magic of the season and the holidays ahead. It’s also time for the end-of-year, just for fun quiz. The quiz is meant to help you visually recognize the plants featured this year, in their fall or winter dress, and to test your knowledge of their scientific names.

It’s always best to use the Latin name of plants when you recommend them to friends and the public – there’s only one Latin name for a plant so it avoids confusion and ensures people select the right plant when shopping at nurseries. The photos below were all taken in November or December, can you still recognize the plants?  I’ve also shown them in bloom to remind you of their beauty and value throughout the year. Don’t feel bad if you can’t match them all – Latin is not an easy language.  Good luck, or as they say in Latin, “Fortuna!”

Match the letter of each plant to the number of its blooming counterpart below.


Alison Milligan ~ MG Class of 2013
Mstr. Gardener / Mstr. Naturalist / Mstr. Watershed Steward
Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional (CBLP)

Celebrating Our History


10 years ago, THIS WEEK, WSA was born. In case you don’t know the full story, here it is… 

               In 2003,  Arlington Echo Outdoor Education Center began to partner with the Anne Arundel  County Department of Public Works (DPW) to install ecosystem restoration projects to address stormwater issues. These innovative solutions represented a paradigm shift away from “collect and convey” toward mimicking nature to clean, cool and infiltrate stormwater. As school children and their parents toured these sites, planted native plants and learned about stormwater, they began to understand their role in Bay restoration.  Communities began to ask what more they could do to help restore their creek, river or the Bay.  As Arlington Echo and DPW staff began to work with these communities, they quickly understood that they were outnumbered by people wanting to take action. Each of these communities needed someone to work with them, but there were not enough staff resources at either Arlington Echo or DPW to capitalize on all of the enthusiasm. 

               In 2005, Ron Bowen and Ginger Ellis of DPW began meeting with Stephen Barry and Suzanne Etgen of Arlington Echo to brainstorm ways to turn this growing awareness into action.  Over the next 2 years, and 100s of hours, the Watershed Stewards Academy concept was born.  After pitching the idea to David O’Neil (then of Chesapeake Bay Trust) and Verna Harrison (then of Keith Campbell Foundation), DPW secured three years of funding for program development.  Soon Carrie Decker of the MD Department of Natural Resources approached DPW about funding WSA with a small pot of NOAA Coastal Communities money. In December 2008, a staff person, Suzanne Etgen, was dedicated to work with the program and WSA was born. 

10 years ago this week WSA was born. On December 8, 2008, the WSA founders (Ron Bowen, Ginger Ellis, Stephen Barry and Suzanne Etgen) invited about 40 partners consisting of RiverKeepers, landscape architects, local government leaders and environmental advocates, to help in the formation of key aspects of the program:  Curriculum, Tool Box for Sustaining Action and Consortium of Support Professionals. A kickoff meeting was held in the Great Room at Arlington Echo, committees were established and less than 3 months later, WSA began training our first class of 32 Master Watershed Stewards.    

In spring of 2010, the Chesapeake Bay Program, impressed by the power of citizen stewards engaged through WSA, wrote the replication of WSA into their strategy to address President Obama’s Executive Order for Bay Restoration.  WSA formed a strategic partnership with the University of Maryland Seagrant Extension, to help propagate WSAs. There are now established WSA programs in the National Capital Region (Montgomery and Prince Georges County and DC), Howard, Harford, St. Mary’s and Cecil Counties.  Additionally, WSA has been replicated in Pennsylvania, upstate New York, and Minnesota.



Our Vision…  Every community in Anne Arundel County is actively engaged to ensure clean waters.

Our Mission… To develop citizen leaders to foster community change for clean waters.

Remembering Dick Lahn


Along with most of the environmental community, we are saddened at the passing of Dick “Ivy” Lahn, WSA Consortium Member, founder of String of Pearls and extraordinary environmental advocate. 

I first met Dick when he was organizing stormwater project in Crofton in 2006. Dick, along with his sidekick, Ann Pearson, was trying to demonstrate how people in Crofton could very easily intercept water from their own roofs and driveways and keep it from getting into nearby streams. We sat together for several hours in front of a computer making maps of the Crofton area and its watersheds to be posted at the local library.  

Over a decade later, Dick remembered that day, and remarked on it just a few months ago at WSA’s 10th anniversary celebration at Mayo Beach Park. This was so characteristic of Dick  -  to recognize and thank others for their role in HIS work. Rather than take credit, Dick was always looking for ways to build others up; to acknowledge with gratitude the efforts of others.


There are many kinds of leaders in the environmental movement. Dick was not a “take charge” leader or one to relish the spotlight. Instead, Dick led with humility, focusing on a vision of people working together to make change. His way was to exuded so much love and gratitude toward people doing good things that we just could not help but do more of those good things.   

A great example of his gratitude-centered leadership is his String of Pearls project. If you are not familiar with it, check it out.

Personally, I am so grateful to have had Dick as a mentor and friend. My life and WSA’s path has been altered by his gentle spirit and his passion for positive change. Today, I remember Dick and am reminded to consider his “gratitude-centered” leadership as I move into the holiday season. Thank you Dick, for all you have given. We will miss you. 

Suzanne Etgen

Master Watershed Steward Amy Clements with Dick Lahn at WSA’s 10th Anniversary Kickoff Celebration

Master Watershed Steward Amy Clements with Dick Lahn at WSA’s 10th Anniversary Kickoff Celebration