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Pima Master Gardeners
Monthly Volunteer Meeting
Phenology and the Master Gardeners
LoriAnne Barnett
Education Coordinator, USA-NPN
Introduction to Phenology
What is Phenology?
Introduction to Phenology
What is Phenology?
http://climatewisconsin.org/story/phenology
Phenology Observation Program
Overview
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Introduction to Phenology
Why do we care?
USA National Phenology Network
Phenology and Pima Extension
Participate!
Introduction to Phenology
What is phenology?
Nature’s calendar
The science of the seasons
• Blooms and buds
• Hibernation, migration,
emergence
• Easy to observe
Why does it matter?
• Growth rate and range
• Animal – plant – climate
relationships
• Management strategies
• Health implications
• Agricultural uses
Introduction to Phenology
Who observes phenology?
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Scientists
Gardeners
Agriculturists
Land managers
Youth
Famous historical figures
Stink bug trap
crops (right)
adjacent
to soybean in
October in
north Florida
Photo courtesy of:
Northern Florida Research and Education Center,
Mizell, R. F.
Phenology, in short, is a “horizontal science”
which transects all ordinary biological
professions. Whoever sees the land as a whole
is likely to have an interest in it. –A. Leopold
Introduction to Phenology
Discussion:
What seasonal changes have you noticed in the last 12 months that are
different than you remember from years’ past?
Have you ever kept a nature journal or calendar? Do you wish you had?
How would it be useful to you today?
How does phenology directly relate to your life? Our lives on this
planet?
Introduction to Phenology
HUNTING
History and Phenology:
Traditions and Culture
Fisherman on the east coast of Canada would
not fish for shad (Alosa sapisissima) until after
the shadbush (Amelanchier spp.) flowered.
Beaubien, E.G. 1991. Phenology of Vascular Plant Flowering in Edmonton and across
Alberta. MS thesis, University of Alberta.
The Nuu-Chah-Nulth tribe of
Vancouver Island used the
ripening of salmonberries
(Rubus spectabilis) to predict
the return of adult sockeye
salmon (Oncorhynchus keta)
to freshwater.
Bouchard & Kennedy, 1990. Clayoquot Sound Indian Land Use. Report prepared for MacMillan Bloedel Ltd.
Peacock, S. L. 1992 Piikani Ethnobotany: Traditional Plant Knowledge of the Piikani Peoples of the Northwest Plains. MS thesis, University of Calgary.
Introduction to Phenology
History and Phenology
Traditions and Culture:
HARVESTING
The Blackfoot tribe of s. Alberta and Canada
used the flowering of the buffalo bean
(Thermopsis rhombifolia) to indicate that
bison males (Bison bison) had eaten enough
spring browse to be ready to hunt (their
meat was sufficiently marbled with fat).
Johnston A. 1982. Plants and the Blackfoot. Prov. Mus. Alberta Nat. Hist. Occ. Pap. No. 4, Alberta Culture,
Historical Resources Division, Edmonton, Alberta.
Introduction to Phenology
The Tubatulabal tribe of Kern County (CA) used the
ripening of coffeeberry fruits (Rhamnus californica)
at low elevations to indicate that pinyon pine
(Pinus monophylla) seeds in the mountains were
ready to harvest.
HARVESTING
History and Phenology
Traditions and Culture:
Anderson, M. Kat. 2002. UC Davis.
Introduction to Phenology
History and Phenology
Traditions and Culture
HARVESTING
© Phil Dering
From: Texas Beyond History
By J. Frank Dobie
The Magnificent Mesquite by Ken E. Rogers
Introduction to Phenology
History and Phenology
Record Keeping
Introduction to Phenology
Thoreau
History and Phenology
Research, spring timing and range*
• 43 species at Walden Pond
bloom 7 days earlier than 150
years ago
• Blueberries flower 21 days
earlier
• 27% of the species are no
longer there
• Importance of legacy datasets
*(Primack and Miller-Rushing, 2012)
SPECIES
AND ECOSYSTEMS
Walden Pond
Photo by Scot Miller
ARE INFLUENCED BY
GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL CHANGE
Introduction to Phenology
History and Phenology
Cloned Plants Project
• Began in 1950s by Joe Caprio
• Series of lilacs and data at
Experimental Ranges across US for
improve predictions of crop yield, pest
management and bloom dates
• Clones minimize variations between
locations
• Predict the spring index and provide
comparable data
• Became part of the
UW - Milwaukee Indicator
Observation Program
HISTORIC LILAC NETWORK
ESTABLISHED IN THE 1950S
SANTA RITA
EXPERIMENTAL RANGE,
GREEN VALLEY, AZ
S. vulgaris (common lilac), S. x chinensis (Red Rothromagenisis),
C. florida (Appalachian Spring Dogwood)
Introduction to Phenology
Phenology Observation Program
Overview
 Why do we care?
Why do we care?
Phenology and Climate Change
EARLIER
Research, spring timing and range
A three-way mismatch
English Oak
EARLIER
Winter Moth
SAME TIME EACH YEAR
Pied Flycatcher
Both et al. 2006 Nature
Why do we care?
Wildfires
Flu
season
Festivals
Pests &
Diseases
Invasions
Ecotourism
Allergies
Agriculture
Phenological patterns are
important, economically and
biologically
… and sensitive to climate
… and sensitive to climate change.
“Phenology…is perhaps the simplest process
in which to track changes in the ecology of
species in response to climate change.” (IPCC
2007)
“Because of their close connection with
climate, the timing of phenological events
can be accurate indicators of climate
change.” (EPA 2010)
Why might MGs care?
PHENOLOGY (P11+)
Planting
Pruning
Pollinators
Pre-emergence herbicides
(Pesticides)
Pupas
Produce harvest
Predictive viewing
Plant populations
Prediction of sunburn
Purchase ladybugs...
©Pima Master Gardeners
Why might MGs care?
Pollinator Garden
Local Questions?
Garden Tours
Photograph
Tomato hornworm
©How Stuff Works
©IFAS Extension
Phenology Observation Program
Overview
 USA National Phenology Network
USA National Phenology Network
Primary goal
To encourage observation of
phenological events and understand
how plants, animals and landscapes
respond to environmental variation
and climate change.
Mission
• Make phenology data, models and
related information available to
scientists, resource managers and
the public.
• Encourage people of all ages and
backgrounds to observe and
record phenology.
A NATIONAL NETWORK OF
INTEGRATED PHENOLOGICAL
OBSERVATIONS ACROSS SPACE AND
TIME.
USA National Phenology Network
Network Tools
• Standard methods for data
collection
• Basic and applied research
• Decision-support tools
• Education and outreach
Nature’s Notebook
Legacy Datasets
Citizen Science Project
A Multi-taxa, National-scale
Phenology System
What’s Nature’s Notebook?
A national plant and animal phenology
observation program.
“HAVING A REASON AND
Online monitoring system
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Citizen Science/Scientist contributions
Core protocols
Dynamic data visualizations
Network of partners
A MECHANISM FOR
PAYING ATTENTION TO
THE NATURAL WORLD
AROUND ME ENRICHES
MY LIFE.” — HANS
Why Citizen Science?
What Is Citizen Science?
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Engages volunteers
Expands ability of scientists
Teaches scientific methods
Public and professional
scientists
Research teams
Educate and generate data
Meet science & research
goals
Eliminates gloom and doom
Citizen Science Info
• www.birds.cornell.edu/citsci/about
• www.CitSci.org
• www.scistarter.org
USA National Phenology Network
630 plant species and 230 animal species
1815 observers reporting (6201 total) making ~250,000 observations
USA National Phenology Network
Recent and unusual rise in global temperature
• Understand plant & animal response
• Record early/late spring & fall events
• Ecosystem shift
USA National Phenology Network
Species Interactions
Ecosystem in Balance
Stewardship
Habitat
Research
Phenology Observation Program
Overview
 Phenology and Pima Extension
Phenology at Pima Extension
The Pima County Master Gardeners are a group of volunteers providing
leadership and guidance to the community in home gardening and
landscaping.
• Outreach
• Education
• Expertise
Phenology research at the Extension Office can help you make informed
recommendations, provide area-specific information about bloom times and year
to year variations, and accurate species information.
Phenology at Pima Extension
Phenology and Pima Extension
Pollinator Garden
Local Questions?
Garden Tours
Photograph
Tomato hornworm
©How Stuff Works
©IFAS Extension
Phenology Observation Program
Overview
 Participate!
Participate!
1. Help us to capture what’s happening in YOUR garden at
PCE and at home
2. Help us to create hypotheses and answer gardening
questions – maybe demonstration garden chairs already
have questions?
3. Help us teach others how to pay attention to plants and
animals and their response to climate and weather
4. Help us to do community outreach and help me with my
education goals
Participate!
Know your Native Plants!
Jojoba
Saguaro
Creosote bush
Velvet mesquite
Honey mesquite
Desert ironwood
Blue paloverde
Yellow paloverde
Participate!
Phenophase Definitions
What is a phenophase?
An observable stage in the annual
lifecycle of a plant or animal that
can be defined by a start and end
point. Often having a duration of
a few days or weeks.
Participate!
Leaves
Flowers
Fruits
www.usanpn.org/participate/guidelines
Participate!
Status
Event
Abundance – how many?
Sample Nature’s Notebook data sheet
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YES
NO
UNCERTAIN
No record if you did not check
Participate!
Frequency of Observations
Time of Day
• As often as possible
• At least once a week
• All observations are valuable!
Keep looking for a
phenophase even if it has
ended.
• Convenient
• Consistent
• Daytime
Participate!
Plants: Make repeat observations of the same individual plants
for as long as you are recording data.
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Participate!
Animals: Create a checklist for your site, look and listen for ALL
species EACH time you visit. In some cases there may be many
animals (mammals, amphibians, insects, etc.) that could visit
your site.
Participate!
Why?
• Phenophases may be
triggered by moisture and not
just temperature
• Negative data is valuable
• Conditions may change
rapidly
• More data = better analysis
• Climate shift may be changing
when events occur
www.usanpn.org/participate/guidelines
Participate!
Enter Observations Online
www.usanpn.org/participate/guidelines
Participate!
www.usanpn.org/participate/guidelines
Participate!
www.usanpn.org/participate/guidelines
Participate!
Tucson Phenology Trail
Currently 7 locations
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Biosphere 2
UA Campus
Sam Hughes Neighborhood
Pima Extension Offices (2)
Santa Rita Experimental
Range
• Tucson Audubon Mason
Center
• Tumamoc Hill
• Madera Canyon
Total of 75 Miles, start to finish
3-10 species tagged at each
Participate!
1. Host a docent-led walk in the demonstration garden
• Incorporate phenology into what you talk about
• Talk about how plants and animals respond locally
2. Collect weekly data on our installed Phenology Walk in the
demonstration garden
3. Help with a phenology station during one of the school
group visits
4. Participate with one of our other sites/be a docent for the
Phenology Trail
Other ideas about how to be involved?
Phenology Observation Program
Collecting systematic
information about species life
cycles will allow us to build a
long term data set. We then
may begin to understand how
our ecosystems are responding
to a changing environment.
Thank you!
You’re invited to
connect with USA-NPN…
• Sign up for a phenology
e-newsletter (quarterly)
• Join the Nature’s Notebook
community and become an
observer: Contribute to
science while having fun!
• Discover new tools and
resources for work or play
LoriAnne Barnett
[email protected]
LoriAnne Barnett
[email protected]
@loriannebarnett