Lakeside Daisy photo by Jasmine Cupp
The Lake Erie Water Snake is not the only local threatened species iconic to Ottawa County. During May, the Lakeside Daisy flowers brighten the Marblehead peninsula in the last remaining native locale population remaining in the United States. This local flower is a native natural wonder that draws springtime visitors to the area as it blooms.
While Kelleys Island has a burgeoning population of Lakeside Daisy blooms annually, that population was seeded there to help the flower species, listed as endangered in Ohio and federally threatened. Restoration efforts by various government, nonprofit, and private organizations have kept the delicate Lakeside Daisy from facing outright extinction in recent years.
The nineteen-acre Lakeside Daisy State Nature Preserve is the only native site of naturally occurring Lakeside Daisy under public ownership in the United States. All other sites with the flower have been seeded from another location, often the Marblehead peninsula.
This year, Flora-quest has teamed with the Ohio Natural Areas and Preserves Association to present a two-day workshop on the Lakeside Daisy and its native alvar habitat. Event dates are May 12 and 13 with an additional venue welcome at the Lakeside Fountain Inn on May 11. Event speakers include Allison Cusick, retired chief botanist of the Ohio Division of Natural Areas and Preserves, leading a discussion of alvar habitats and their significance and Jennifer Windus of the Ohio Division of Wildlife discussing rare species, focusing on the Lakeside Daisy.
In addition to trips to the Lakeside Daisy State Nature Preserve, event guests will also have trips to Meadowbrook Marsh, Marblehead Lighthouse, and a private property that has an alvar habitat and glacial grooves. So, while the Lakeside Daisy is the star attraction, event guests will get a taste of other attractions that Marblehead and eastern Ottawa County have to offer.
An impressive roster of sponsors reveals that the Lakeside Daisy is an Ottawa county natural resource valued throughout the state and beyond. In addition to the Ohio Natural Areas and Preserves Association, event sponsors include the Trust for Public Lands, Cincinnati Wild Flower Preservation Society, Ohio Environmental Council, Ohio Prairie Nursery, Black Swamp Conservancy, Black Swamp Bird Observatory, Wild Ones Columbus Chapter, Midwest native Plant Society, and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. The unique qualities of the Lakeside Daisy and alvar habitats are a valuable resource drawing regard to the greater Marblehead area.
For further event details, consult www.flora-quest.com.