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Plant tours to highlight weekend at Blackwater Falls State Park

July 13, 2012
The Inter-Mountain

Edible, medicinal and poisonous plants, along with ways to identify them, will the focus of a weekend session presented by naturalist Bill Beatty today through Sunday at Blackwater Falls State Park.

"People today look to the natural word for answers to health, food sources and insight," said Paulita Cousin, park naturalist.

The weekend includes an introduction to edible wild plants, a Saturday field trip to Fernow Experimental Forest, and the identification of medicinal plants and edible and poisonous mushrooms.

The weekend package includes two nights at Blackwater Falls Lodge in a shared room, Saturday and Sunday full-breakfast, Saturday lunch and Friday and Saturday dinner; refreshments, programs and activities. Registration and reservations are encouraged by phoning 304-259-5216 or emailing

The weekend interpretative sessions include:

"Introduction to Edible Wild Plants" with guest naturalist Bill Beatty is at 7 p.m. in the lodge conference center today. The evening includes discussion about the history, availability, use and nutrition of West Virginia's edible wild plants.

A field trip to Fernow Experimental Forest by car caravan to Parsons begins at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday and is a full day program.

"Fernow offers a first-hand look at a variety of edible, medicinal and poisonous plants," Cousin said. "This field trip will be a great day of identification and learning about plants with one of West Virginia's noted naturalists."

A bag lunch, snacks and plenty of water is included in the weekend package. Day-only attendees will need to bring a lunch. Sturdy shoes are recommended.

A 7 p.m. Saturday program at Blackwater Falls Lodge on medicinal plants emphasizes the history and use of wild plants.

Beatty's program, "Edible and Poisonous Mushrooms," begins at 9 a.m. Sunday at Blackwater Lodge.



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