Archive for the ‘People’ category

State Rare Plants Featured on Green Roof at SUNY ESF

January 5, 2011

When the new Gateway Building is finished on the the campus of SUNY ESF it will feature a green roof containing New York’s largest living collection of state protected and rare plants, according to the alumni magazine.

For more details and the full article CLICK HERE.

ESF Gateway Building when finished

Remembering Former NYFA Board Member Bob Ingalls

November 20, 2010

The NYFA board and friends of  former board member Bob Ingalls were saddended by the news of his passing last week.  Bob was a great plant enthusiast and supporter of the flora of New York. He contributed a great deal to the advancement of NYFA and was eager to help anyone learn about the flora, especially the sedges.  He once said that one day he decided he was going to learn all the plants in New York. He wanted to start out with the most difficult plants and so he chose the sedges, becoming a real expert in the group.

The following remembrance is from the President of RPI, Dr. Jackson:

It is with great sadness and deep regret that I announce the recent passing of Dr. Robert P. Ingalls, the executive officer of the Computer Science Department at Rensselaer and a respected teacher of many computer science courses. Dr. Ingalls passed away late last week.

After a distinguished career in developmental psychology, Dr. Ingalls’ interests turned to computer science in the mid-1980s. He earned his master’s degree in computer science here in 1986, and joined the Computer Science Department that same year as director of operations, eventually rising to serve in the role of executive officer.

Dr. Ingalls earned his bachelor’s degree in developmental psychology from Williams College in 1967, and went on to earn his master’s degree from the University of Connecticut in 1968. He earned his Ph.D. in developmental psychology from the University of Connecticut in 1972.

Dr. Ingalls was the author of a number of books on developmental psychology, including “Mental Retardation: The Changing Outlook.” He taught psychology at the California State College at Chico, and here in Troy at Russell Sage College, before joining the New York State Council on Children and Families.

After he came to Troy, Dr. Ingalls continued his lifelong interest in natural history. He was an accomplished field botanist, and an observer and advocate for the ecology of Rensselaer County. He served as a member and officer of the Rensselaer Land Trust and acted as a steward for the Nature Conservancy. Dr. Ingalls’ interests were many and diverse, and his enthusiasm engaged all who knew him.

There will be a memorial service for Dr. Ingalls at the Chapel and Cultural Center, 2125 Burdett Avenue in Troy, on Saturday, December 4, at 11:00 a.m., followed by a reception in The Great Room at the Heffner
Alumni House.

Bob Ingalls, Frank Knight and Steve Young at Valcour Island 2006

Caroyln Summers Book Signing at Fiddlehead Creek Nursery

September 4, 2010

Ed Ketchledge, NY Botanist and Educator, Dies at 85

July 9, 2010

From Steve Young – NY Natural Heritage Program

This link is to an obituary in the Watertown Daily Times:

I met Dr. Ketchledge in 1971 when I was his undergraduate student in dendrology at SUNY College of Forestry (as it was known back then) at Syracuse in the early 1970s. I remember him as a great teacher (he gave me an A) and I think his love of trees and plants probably rubbed off on me as I found my way to a botany career over the years. Little did I know back then that we would be friends and colleagues as we both worked to preserve the flora of the high peaks of the Adirondacks. When I started working with The Natural Heritage Program in the early 1990s I went on numerous field trips with Ketch to observe the Adirondack flora.  We both trained the summit stewards on Whiteface Mountain, a flora he spent many years refining (he was the first one to spot the invasive wild chervil on the Lake Placid turn). He was also especially fond of the plants at Bloomingdale Bog and some of the weird-looking lycopods in the sandy areas of nearby Vermontville. He was an excellent bryologist too and he never failed to point out the interesting mosses he saw along the way. He provided me with a treasure-trove of information about Adirondack alpine plants and I always enjoyed being out in the field and learning from him. In a 1999 letter to me he wrote, “As I reflect back over what I’ve done since surviving combat in WWII, my greatest pleasure and satisfaction is the many lasting friendships that I still enjoy from my years of sharing information with eager young people at ESF, each one a reflection in turn of my own quest for information and knowledge of the natural world from which we spring. I honestly believe I have learned and enjoyed that phase of my career more than any other effort/voyage I have have pursued.”

I will miss him.  Below is a photo of Ketch (on the far right) I took in June of 2001 on one of our trips together to Whiteface.

Ketch with the Summit Stewards on Whiteface

Northern Wildflowers: Facebook Page

February 12, 2010

If you are on facebook, check out Northern Wildflowers page. This is the description: A group for those people who like to admire, smell, and propagate wildflowers (especially the ones in New York and Minnesota).

A Nature Blog to Follow: Fish Creek Saratoga

October 7, 2009
Here is a beautiful new blog about the nature of Fish Creek, a tributary of Saratoga Lake.

From the Intro to Jackie Callahan’s blog: I have been in love with nature most of my adult life. This passion first began with my desire to draw wildflowers. Then, I began to be curious about all of the other beautiful and interesting things I was seeing around me: insects, birds, trees, etc., and I was inspired to draw these, as well. Eventually, I began to immerse myself more deeply into my study of the natural world. I started the practice of keeping a nature-journal. It was specifically about my outings in my kayak on Fish Creek, an outlet of Saratoga Lake. I described what I saw, made sketches, took photographs, etc., as a result, I have a twelve-year study of the natural history of Fish Creek. These records have been a source of inspiration for me, for: songs, drawings, paintings, poetry, and stories. I have self-published a book, The Wildflowers of Saratoga National Historical Park, and I illustrated Skidmore College professor, Sue Van Hook’s book, Treasure in the Northwoods, but my first love is the journal I have kept on Fish Creek. I would like to use this blog to share excerpts of that journal with kindred spirits: nature- lovers, artists, poets, musicians, etc., all over the world.

Follow Jackie’s blog at:

Rogers McVaugh Dies: Author of the Flora of Columbia County

October 2, 2009

From Claudia Knab-Vispo: Rogers McVaugh passed away on 24 Sept. 2009 after a productive and happy life dedicated to what he loved best: the study of plants. He died in his sleep at his home in North Carolina. Born 30 May 1909, he turned 100 this past May. The University of North Carolina web-site has a nice summary of his professional achievements at:

There will be a more extensive obituary in the NYFA December newsletter.

Photo by Susan Whitfield, Dept. of Biology, UNC-CH

Photo by Susan Whitfield, Dept. of Biology, UNC-CH