Cullowhee Native Plant Conference coming up July 18-21

Native plant enthusiasts from all across the Southeast have gathered at Western Carolina University every summer for the past 35 years to spend a few days learning and sharing information about regional plants.

This year is no exception as WCU is hosting the annual Cullowhee Native Plant Conference beginning Wednesday, July 18, and continuing through Saturday, July 21, on the campus in Cullowhee.

“The purpose of the Cullowhee Conference is to increase interest in and knowledge of propagating and preserving native southeastern plant species in the landscape,” said Bobby Hensley, WCU’s associate director of continuing education and university liaison for the conference.

The event itinerary includes seminars, hands-on workshops, field trips around Western North Carolina (including to the Blue Ridge Parkway) and opportunities to network with others and share ideas through information displays in the residence halls.

Past conference participants have included landscape architects, commercial nursery operators, garden club members, botanists and horticulturists from state highway departments along with representatives of universities, native plant societies, botanical gardens and arboretums.

Both professionals and laypeople will gain valuable knowledge from the informative field trips, lectures, workshops, and “Lunch n’ Learn” poster presentations, Hensley said.

For more information about the conference, visit