The B. W. Wells Association will host Heritage Day at Rock Cliff Farm, B. W. Wells State Recreation Area, 1630 Bent Road, Wake Forest, North Carolina, on Saturday, April 8, 2017, from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, Rain or Shine. There are no admission fees. Heritage Day features history and nature walks, an hourly plant raffle, and children’s games and activities.
Dr.Wells and his wife Maude were loved and respected by the neighboring families in the rural community where they spent their retirement years at Rock Cliff Farm. He taught the children how to make baseballs, how to paint with homemade pine needle brushes, and how to make and fly kites. These crafts, and others, are part of the children’s activities on Heritage Day.
Bertram Whittier Wells was a pioneer ecologist and botanist. He was a historically important figure as a proponent of studying plants as part of a natural community rather than as isolated individuals. His book, The Natural Gardens of North Carolina, published in 1932, is a classic work on the natural history of North Carolina.
The following anecdote is taken from Nature’s Champion: B. W. Wells, Tar Heel Ecologist by James Troyer:
Dr. Wells tried to make botany understandable and interesting to the average person. He invented common names that differed from those in contemporary botanical manuals. He wanted the common name to help the observer remember the flower or plant. Most of his names have been lost to time, but the one that remains and is still in use in botanical manuals is Green and Gold, Dr. Wells’, name for Chrysogonum viginianum. It is pictured below.