Since our founding in 1900 as the Society for the Protection of Native Plants, we have had four names. In 2019 we are ready for one that is better aligned with our mission, our impact…and our roots.
After a great deal of research and careful consideration, we are pleased to announce that New England Wild Flower Society is now Native Plant Trust.
Our new name more accurately reflects our mission and our achievements in conservation, horticulture, and education. The tagline is an abbreviated version of our mission statement and communicates our geographic focus. We are grateful to our board, staff, volunteers, and members who helped us throughout the process, and we are excited to share this news with our supporters across the region and around the world.
ANSWERS TO KEY QUESTIONS
Why did you change your name?
We have had four previous names, and the move from “native plants” to “wild flower” in 1925 reflected a particular emphasis of that era. Our earlier names were:
1900: Society for the Protection of Native Plants
1922: Society for the Preservation of Native New England Plants
1925: New England Wild Flower Preservation Society
1970: New England Wild Flower Society
We received considerable feedback that the most recent name, New England Wild Flower Society, was confusing (yes, we care about trees, shrubs, and habitats), too long, and hurting our ability to reach new audiences. It also no longer accurately reflected our modern—or even original—mission to save native plants in the wild and educate people about their value and use in gardens.
Does this mean that you are changing the focus of your work?
Our mission and work have not changed. In fact, we’ve changed the name to better align with the conservation, horticulture, and education work we have been doing for years, and will continue to do in the future.
Will you be working outside New England?
Our work will still be focused on New England and its native plants. And our impact will continue to be felt across the U.S., and worldwide, as it has been for decades. Our pioneering initiatives often serve as models for colleagues from across the nation; our successes in plant conservation have received international recognition; and our online courses, Go Botany, books, and reports are valued by people who are local and on the other side of the world.
Will you still operate Garden in the Woods and Nasami Farm?
We will continue to operate Garden in the Woods and Nasami Farm. We are dedicated to growing pesticide-free native plants from seed we collect sustainably and to showing how beautiful they can be in designed landscapes.
When does the name change take effect?
The new name became official in January 2019 and is in public use starting in April. It will take time to introduce the new name. For a while you may see our old name on printed materials like brochures. Books, such as Wildflowers of New England and Native Plants for New England Gardens, may always have the old name.