Botanical Society of Western Pennsylvania


BSWP Meetings

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

September 11, 2017, 7:15 p.m. 
“Changing Forests in a Changing World” will be presented by Chris Dolanc, an Assistant Professor of Biology at Mercyhurst University in Erie, PA where he teaches Ecology and Evolution, General Botany, Forest Ecology, Field Botany, and Environmental Problem Solving. 

Getting students outside is a big component of all his courses and he taught a course on California Ecosystems this past May, which was a two-week travel course throughout northern California. Chris’s research deals with how forests change over time, how trees respond to their environment, and how management impacts plant communities. 

Chris moved to Erie, PA with his family in 2014 after finishing his PhD and 2 years of a post-doc at UC-Davis. His dissertation research was on how subalpine trees and forests of the Sierra Nevada in California had changed over the 20th century and how continued climate change might continue to drive changes in the future.

October 9, 2017, 7:15 p.m. 
Henry Schumacher will discuss the flora and ecology of the Albertan boreal forest and the environmental impact of Canadian oil sands development.

Henry is an environmental consultant in Pittsburgh who has worked to help clients to identify, avoid, and mitigate potential environmental impacts for energy development, environmental remediation, transportation, and commercial development projects in throughout the eastern United States, Great Lakes, and in the Oil Sands of Alberta, Canada. Henry earned his Masters in Ecology and Evolution at the University of Pittsburgh studying patterns of biodiversity and species composition in old-growth forests remnants in Pennsylvania. 

November 13, 2017, 7:15 p.m.
Come back soon for speaker information!

December 11, 2017, 7:15 p.m.
Annual Holiday Party

Our Wild Foods Holiday Party will be held at the usual meeting time in the Ford-Mateer classroom at Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

For the Holiday Party, members and guests bring an assortment of foods made from something found in the wild. Appetizers, cookies, candies, fruits, and berries — a challenge for the most daring and creative. Join us with or without a wild food offering.

This is also Member’s Night. After feasting, we’ll share our botanical sightings over the year. A member can bring up to 12 slides or digital photos. A slide projector and a digital video projector will be available.

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

BSWP Field Trips

October 14, 2017, 10:00 a.m.
Duff Park Tree Walk

Murrysville, Westmoreland County
A trek to learn trees and see the Botanical Society's tree sign on the Eastern Hemlock. 

Leader: Loree Speedy; Contact Information:
Cell: 724-518-6022

Directions: From Pittsburgh, take I-376 east (Parkway East) to its end at US 22 East - Murrysville. Travel US 22 for 5 miles to a traffic light and Sheetz at School Road. Turn right onto School Rd, traveling about 1/8 of a mile, cross the bridge over Turtle Creek, and park in the parking lot on the right. GPS coordinates: 40.42193, -79.66893.

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.