Partnerships and projects are important to the mission of Southern Highlands Reserve. We strive to work on projects that are affecting change in the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains.

Southern Appalachian Spruce Restoration Initiative

Through a collaborative effort among local, state and federal partners, SHR is working to help restore Red Spruce to the forests of Western North Carolina. Seedlings raised in the Reserve’s Nursery Complex are planted on public lands with the help of our partners and volunteers.

National Pollinator Garden Network

SHR joined the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge as a registered NPGN site helping to preserve and create revive the health of bees, butterflies, birds, bats and other pollinators through our native plant gardens.

Monarch Waystations

The wooded habitat of the Reserve provides support for butterfly colonies at key points in their migration and life cycles. The Reserve is helping to assure the preservation of the monarch butterfly through monitoring efforts in partnership with Monarch Watch.

The Biodiversity Project

This long-term project investigates and measures the contrasts and similarities in biodiversity between our 20-acre Core Park and the natural woodlands surrounding it.


Thanks to a partnership between the American Public Gardens Association and ESRI International, the Reserve has access to affordable GIS software that helps us tell the botanical “story” of our gardens and the plants within them.

Golden Eagle Photo Monitoring Project

In a partnership with the NC Wildlife Resource Commission and West Virginia University, SHR surveyed the activities of Golden Eagles on our land in order to estimate the Golden Eagle population wintering in the Appalachia during 2013-14. Through wildlife cameras at SHR and other sites, data was collected to track these birds of prey.

Marshall Native Garden Initiative

In the spirit of the Reserve’s mission to advocate the value of native plants, SHR donated specimens from our Nursery Complex to help establish an educational native plant garden at the Madison County public library.

McKinney Meadow

SHR staff partnered with several local organizations to create a master plan for a small triangular tract of land in order for the land to be acquired into a land trust.

Circle Gallery Exhibit, Athens GA

Through photography, the Reserve’s garden rooms were recreated in an installation entitled “Right Plant, Right Place: The Impact of designing with native plants at the Southern Highlands Reserve.”



Wildflowers and Plant Communities

This richly illustrated field guide serves as an introduction to the wildflowers and plant communities of the southern Appalachians and the rolling hills of the adjoining piedmont.


Native Trees of the Southeast

The diversity of woody plants in the Southeast is unparalleled in North America. Native Trees of the Southeast is a practical, compact field guide for the identification of the more than 225 trees native to the region.

The Magical World of Moss Gardening by Annie Martin

The Magical World of Moss Gardening

Asheville native Annie Martin is known worldwide for her expertise in moss cultivation. Her recent book features the Reserve’s abundant mosses in our gardens.


Native Plants of the Southeast

This complete guide is an invaluable resource, with plant profiles for over 460 species of trees, shrubs, vines, ferns, grasses, and wildflowers.