Hone your plant identification skills with the Kellogg Bird Sanctuary, area experts

How often do you notice a plant in your backyard or along a road, trail or stream, and wonder what it is? Take the guesswork out of identifying plants by joining the W.K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary and local experts for a six-week, online course beginning Wednesday, Aug. 5. 

The Field Botany course will feature a series of six workshops, held on Zoom, from 6 to 7:15 p.m. on Wednesdays. Presenters are:

  • Dr. Tyler Bassett, Michigan Natural Features Inventory
  • Erik Elgin, Michigan State University Extension
  • Shawn Kelly, Natural Resources Conservation Service
  • Dr. Danielle Zoellner, Idle Awhile Farm and Forage

The course is open to plant enthusiasts of all levels. Sessions will examine a variety of topics, including:

  • Basic botanical terminology
  • Trees of Michigan’s forests
  • The history and distribution of Michigan’s native plant communities
  • Wetland plants of the Midwest
  • Prairies and savannas of Michigan
  • Aquatic plants


Register for the course at by 11:59 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 1; space is limited. The cost is $55 for Sanctuary members and $65 for non-members. Participants are able to earn Master Gardener credits for attending.

Past course participants appreciated the format of having a unique topic for each class as well as “learning the special features of the plants and interesting backstories of how plants have been used in history.”

For more information about the Sanctuary, visit Direct questions to or (269) 671-2510.


About the Sanctuary

The W.K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary’s mission is to conserve native habitat for migratory and resident birds and to promote environmental awareness through research, education and outreach. Since 1928, the Sanctuary has served as a practical training school for animal care and land management, and remains an innovator in wildlife conservation efforts.

The Sanctuary’s grounds and trails remain open to visitors who observe proper safety and distancing guidelines, though buildings—including restrooms—are temporarily closed. Please consider supporting the Sanctuary by becoming a member.


About the Kellogg Biological Station 

As Michigan State University’s largest off-campus educational complex, KBS has put its land-grant values into practice for nearly a century, providing the public with examples of science’s crucial role in sustaining natural and managed communities. KBS students and faculty work to understand and solve real-world environmental problems for a better tomorrow. To learn more, visit