Montreat Native Plant Sale and Arbor Day Celebration return for seventh year

Special to Black Mountain News
Montreat College instructor of environmental science, Joshua Holbrook, will a day and night salamander walk during the Native Plant Sale in Montreat on April 27. Holbrook will also hold a presentation on Hellbender conservation efforts in Montreat.

An annual event in Montreat that promotes awareness and use of native plants in the community is returning from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 27.

The Montreat Native Plant Sale and Arbor Day Celebration will take place on Moore Field, below Lake Susan, for the seventh year.

Sponsored by the Montreat Land Care Committee, the annual event features vendors like Appalachian Creek Nursery, Carolina Native Nursery, High Country Nursery and more. 

Exhibits and displays from the American Chestnut foundation, Extension Master Gardeners of Buncombe County and a Montreat Environment table focused on forests, fires, floods and a tree inventory plan will be part of the event as well. 

The schedule will kick off with an Arbor Day proclamation by Montreat mayor Tim Helms, who will also receive the town's recognition as Tree City USA.

Rhiannon and the Relics will provide musical entertainment throughout the day and the J. Lee's Chicken Shack food truck will be on hand. 

This year the Native Plant Sale will include a program from Montreat College instructor of environmental science Josh Holbrook that will focus on Salamanders and Hellbenders in the community.

Holbrook will lead a half-hour creek walk, which will locate and identify salamanders in the portion of Flat Creek that runs through Montreat. The walk begins at 10 a.m. 

Holbrook will hold a presentation about Hellbender conservation in Montreat at noon and a night hike, at 9 p.m., is likely to result in as many as 100 sightings, according to Holbrook. 

Renee Fortner, of RiverLink, will hold a WaterRICH Landscape presentation at 10:30 a.m. Fortner will focus on stormwater management through the use of rain gardens. 

The Landcare Committee is an independent nonprofit organization in Montreat that works to preserve the natural beauty of the area. They are supported in their efforts by the town, Mountain Retreat Association and Montreat College.