Botanical Society of Western Pennsylvania

BSWP Meetings

The Society meets monthly from September through June on every second Monday of the month at 7:15 p.m. See directions, below.

Directions to Ford Mateer Classroom of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History:

The entrance to the parking lot, which is gated, is just past the Museum at the intersection of Forbes and Craig Street. The Ford-Mateer Classroom is reached through the Portal Entry in the rear parking lot area. Once inside the building, the room is located just beyond the Security desk on the left. In addition to the Museum parking lot, which costs $6, there are metered spaces on Forbes Avenue opposite the Museum and along Craig Street that are free after 6 p.m. From there you will cross the street and walk through the right side of the gates to the parking lot. Continue on the sidewalk to the rear of the building where you will see the sign for “Portal Entry” ahead. 

If you do not park in the Museum’s lot, from Forbes Avenue, walk along the right side of the parking toll gates to the parking lot. Continue on the sidewalk to the rear of the building where you will see the sign for "Portal Entry" ahead. 

Directions to the Carnegie Museum

Other Special Events

Natural Areas Conference
October 8-10, 2019 • Pittsburgh, PA

Registration is now open! Early Bird rates available until Aug 1. Practitioner scholarship applications are open.

This event offers natural areas professionals access to new research, valuable training and important connections with other professionals in conservation-related fields.

The conference program features symposia, sessions, posters and preconference and ID Workshops. Symposia include: Protecting and Managing Conservation Lands and Waters for Climate Resilience, Communication and Management of Emerging Forest Pests and Pathogens, Native Plant Conservation Initiatives, Managing Urban Natural Areas, and Priority Wetland Restoration.

Field Workshops are planned to some of the most biodiverse spots in PA, with rafting, canoeing and tours of Fallingwater. Sponsorship and Exhibitor opportunities available.

Find out more at

BSWP Field Trips

Registration for Botanical Society field trips is not required. Everyone is welcome, including non-members. Trips last 3 to 4 hours but one can leave at any time. For questions, call the field trip leader or Loree Speedy at 724-872-5232/home; 724-518-6022/cell or

All members are invited to provide their e-mail addresses to receive information and periodic updates of additional field trips scheduled throughout the year. Please send an e-mail to if you are not on the list.

Friday, June 28, 10:00 a.m.
Shollards Wetland, Lawrence County
Dianne and Bob Machesney,; cell: 412-523-0368
home: 412-366-7869

Directions: From Pittsburgh, take I-79 North to Exit 96 - PA488/Portersville. Turn left at the end of the ramp and continue to US 19. Turn right onto US 19 north and travel 13 miles to turn right onto Black Road. Pass the corn silos. At bottom of a hill is a 4-way intersection. Turn left on Nelson Road. About 1/2 mile turn right onto #2 Mine Road. Pass swamps on either side of road. At the rise in the road, turn right into gravel/grass parking lot, where we shall meet.
GPS Coordinates: 41.11476, -80.19250

Just past the parking lot is the railroad grade on the left that goes through Shollards wetland, where we will walk.
The gated road in the parking lot goes back to Black Swamp and many ponds.
There are no facilities. Bring a lunch and a chair.

Sunday, June 30, 2019, 10:00 a.m.
Duff Park from the new entrance, Murrysville, Westmoreland County

We will meet at the new Visitor Center along US 22.
Directions: From Pittsburgh, take I-376 east (Parkway East) to its end at US 22 East -Murrysville. Travel US 22 for about 4 miles to the intersection of Trafford Rpad (McDonald’s on the left). Continue along US 22 about 7/10 of a mile. At The Fireplace and Airgas businesses, turn right into the new Robert Trail Access, where we will meet.
GPS Coordinates: 40.42699, -79.68400.

Saturday, July 13, 2019, 9:00 AM
Mushroom Walk at Otto and Magdalene
Ackermann Nature Preserve
North Huntingdon Township
Westmoreland County

Leader: Jack and Valerie Baker;;

Directions: From Pittsburgh, travel to the intersection of PA 48 and US 30. Continue east on US 30 for ½ mile to make a left onto Leger Road (Sheetz on the right- hand corner). Turn left onto Leger Road and travel through the countryside for 2 miles. (Ignore the closed road signs as they are referring to a bridge near Brush Creek). At an intersection at the base of the hill, Leger Road turns to the right. Continue straight onto Ardara Road. After 1000 feet, look for the brown Ackermann Nature Preserve sign on the left and park at the end of the grassy strip between two homes.
GPS coordinates of the Preserve’s parking area are
40.36105, -79.74410 WGS84. Remember that the bridge from Ardara/PA 993 is currently not in use, so the Preserve must be reached from US 30.

Wear long pants and bring a lunch. Jack and Valerie will id at lunch.

Friday, July 26, 2019, 10:00 a.m. Jennings Prairie, Butler County
Dianne Machesney,; cell: (412) 523-0368
home: 412-366-7869

This is the perfect time to explore the relict prairie -  hot weather brings the stunning Blazing Star and some of the other dazzling summer flowers to peak performance. The goldenrods of fall will begin to show. Don’t miss the spectacular butterflies that grace the prairie with their breathtaking beauty.
Trails are wheelchair accessible. Wear a hat and sunscreen. Bring binoculars, field guides, water and a lunch.

Directions: From Pittsburgh, take I-79 North to Exit 99, New Castle/ Butler. Drive east on Route 422 roughly 5.8 miles to the Prospect Exit. Turn left (north) onto Route 528.
Continue on Route 528 for about 7 miles. Meet in the Jennings Environmental Center Parking Lot on the left (west) side of the road.
GPS Coordinates: 41.00910, -80.00487

Saturday, July 27, 2019
Celebrate the Bloom Event
Jennings Environmental Education Center
Butler County

Celebrate the Bloom! is a free annual event held at Jennings Environmental Education Center on the last Saturday in July.
Celebrating the state’s only prairie (and the eastern- most prairie in the US), the festival includes nature explorations (i.e. bird, butterfly and wildflower walks), engaging demonstrations, local artisans and food, and musical guests.
The event is produced in cooperation with 3MJC (the friends group and funding partner of Jennings). Music is presented by Lonesome No More Productions/Dennis McCurdy.
Go to for a full schedule, including information about an art contest and musical performances.

Nature explorations will include a Wildflowers of the Prairie walk with Bonnie and Joe Isaac.

Directions: From Pittsburgh, take I-79 North to Exit 99/Butler. Drive east on US 422 roughly 5.8 miles to the Prospect Exit, and turn left (north) onto PA 528. Continue on PA 528 for about 7 miles to the park. GPS Coordinates: 41.00907, -80.00483.