Two entertaining and educational events are planned for Saturday, February 23, in Yankeetown and Crystal River.
Looking out over a lush garden in Florida may be overlooking the exotic, non-native plants that can escape cultivation and spread to natural areas including waters and wetlands. Some of these species are now deemed invasive and detrimental to native flora and biodiversity.
At 10a.m., the Withlacoochee Gulf Preserve and the non-profit group Friends of Withlacoochee Gulf Preserve (FWGP) are hosting the free educational program Exotics – what to do to get rid of them. Keith Morin, a park biologist with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, will present identification and control tools for such pests.
The Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council (FLEPPC) provides guidance to what constitutes an invasive species and the minor or major impact of rogue flora on the environment. There is a comprehensive list of native and non-native plants and their descriptions provided by the University of Florida. The FLEPPC suggests further action by volunteering with a local Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area.
At 6:30p.m., in Crystal River, Wine Shop 3 is holding a wine tasting. This is an opportunity to educate the palate and experience the different subtleties of wine. For $10 per person, the wine bar and store will be offering a sample of up to 10 wines from around the world. And cheeses and dips will be on hand.
Proprietor Coleen Brady confirmed, “We stock several hundred wine varieties from every continent on the globe. Our old and new customers are often surprised and many times delighted by tasting something different.”
Brady also confirmed that the store offers quality wines at prices comparable to a warehouse and requested wines could be brought in from either of their two other locations in Largo and St. Petersburg.