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A Visit to Olympic National Park

Making It Grow Minute

  On a recent trip to the west coast, we visited Olympic National Park, over a million acres. The douglas fir and western red cedar dominated the five hour walk we took to a rocky beach. The woods were amazingly clear; there were no vines and even if we hadn’t been on a walkway, I felt we could have made our way with relative ease. Everything that was vaguely horizontal was covered in moss or lichens, some tree stumps had moss thicker than my finger could measure. The most noticeable shrub was salal which was covered with fruits (I found out later they were edible), a native plant that is collected for the florist industry because of its glossy, thick leaves. A special treat was seeing bunchberry, Cornus Canadensis, a ground cover dogwood species.

Amanda McNulty is a Clemson University Extension Horticulture agent and the host of South Carolina ETV’s Making It Grow! gardening program. She studied horticulture at Clemson University as a non-traditional student. “I’m so fortunate that my early attempts at getting a degree got side tracked as I’m a lot better at getting dirty in the garden than practicing diplomacy!” McNulty also studied at South Carolina State University and earned a graduate degree in teaching there.