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The Sacramento Valley Chapter of the California Native Plant Society serves Sacramento, Yolo, Colusa, Sutter, and Yuba Counties, and parts of Placer and San Joaquin Counties.

Our Mission

The mission of CNPS is to increase understanding and appreciation of California’s native plants and to conserve them and their natural habitats, through education, science, advocacy, horticulture and land stewardship.

Chapter Meetings

Our chapter meetings are free and the public is invited to attend.  Meetings are held the 2nd Wednesday of the month (January - June and September - November) at the Shepard Garden and Arts Center, McKinley Park, 3330 McKinley Blvd, 95816.   GOOGLE MAP

A wide selection of books and Sacramento Valley Chapter t‑shirts are available for purchase at meetings.
Refreshments are always provided! 

May 14th : Native Plants and Native People: the Archaeology of Adaption Presented by S. Joe Griffin  

Joe Griffin by Jaime
(photo by Jaime LeFevre)

Come back to a time when “native plants” were just plants, and human interaction with the environment of California was very different than today. Join archaeologist S. Joe Griffin for an exploration of how people and plants influenced one another through 10,000 dynamic years.

Prior to the arrival of European settlers, prehistoric Native Californians were living in concentrated, sedentary, and socially stratified villages; as were many other native people throughout the western hemisphere. Intriguingly, unlike many other parts of the Americas, Californians were doing this without agriculture. Joe’s talk will explore how this situation seems to have developed, and why agriculture did not achieve a foothold in the state until the influx of Spanish settlers a few hundred years ago.

Starting with the earliest known inhabitants of the Americas, Joe will describe what archaeologists know about prehistoric patterns of plant food consumption, and how the use of ecological models is bringing us closer to understanding how environmental and demographic factors influenced these patterns. He will focus especially on the ways in which Native Californians managed biological resources and the ways these management practices may have changed through time.

A Bay Area native, Joe worked as a freelance archaeological technician on four continents and in several states before returning to California five years ago for a Master’s degree at Sac State. He works as an archaeologist with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.