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[APD] Plant Fest plans

Back to nature plant fest.June 4-5-6th, Gainesville FL, 2004.
Ricky is working on the web site. Last year folks had a great time.
Note, the goal is of this is not viewing lots of aquariums, this is seeing
the plants growing naturally out in nature in a variety of diverse
ecosystems habitats. 
There will plenty of chances to acquire plants, driftwood, fish/critters
and petrified rock.   

Coming into JAX is perhaps the best method. Orlando is another and you can
drop the kids off at Disney or one of the many theme parks.

Careful driving down 301, speed traps. "Lead foot" Ricky found out the hard
Motel 6 is cheap, clean and close to everything.Right off I-75. 

Friday: will be a trip to the Ichetucknee river which is about a 6 mile
trip down a clear hardwater spring full of plants(close to 20 species all
told) in inner tubes, snorkel mask. It is a fun thing to do and you will
see more plants than you can shake a driftwood stick at(App 4hours). Even
if you don't care about plants, you'll have fun doing this. BBQ after the
trip down(2 hours). Side trip to swim in head spring or see Blue Hole if
there is interest. Most will be pooped out. Stop over to Waldo for
driftwood if we are done somewhat early. I'll try and arrange something
there so Tom's is open. Meet over at my place to see a few tanks.
Aquatropics is the local fish store and we can wonder over there as they
are open till 9pm. 

I might have a treat for you and have Bill Haller stop by and take us up to
the Aquatic Weed IFAS center also. Depends on his schedule. Perhaps Dr
Kane's tissue culture might also make it in there.   

Sat: Rainbow river canoe trip. We will hopefully get canoes early at the
park, if not, we can get them at the county park downstream. I will try to
reserve several canoes. Visibility in the river is 200 ft. Swimming,
plants, fishing, collecting outside the park, I will try and arrange a
plant visit to see the Crypts there as I know the park manager.We will head
to the Lower Suwannee River from there and stop off along the road for some
20-30 plants species and many good examples of blackwater pools and
streams. From there we will head to Cedar Key for a nice dinner overlooking
the sea.  

Sun: Santa Fe river Canoe trip. After the freshwater sponge that grows on
Hydrilla, the freshwater pipe fish, water scorpians, blue fin shiners,
Madtom Catfish, FW flouders, southern darter, pygmae sunfish and of course
wood. Should be done around 2-4pm so folks can head back. Or we can head to
Ginnie springs and collect some the Ludwigia there which is 11% genetically
different than the Rainbow springs Ludwigia(10% difference is generally
considered and a different species)    
We will stop at a few springs along the river and road sides for plant
Plants are free, most of the wood will be as well.
Petrified wood, some so big you cannot carry them. 

Canoes run about 8-16$ per person and park fees are about 1 to 4$.
Hotel is about 29.99 per night. Donations for the 3 day guide are

I'll plan for about 20 people but if more come we will accommodate.

Tom Barr 


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