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The 100-Species Challenge


Ever since my sister taught me to really look at plants, I’ve been fascinated by them.  Now thirty years later, I’m finally starting a project I’ve dreamed about  for years:  to know more about the plants and animals that grow nearby. 

After all, there are hundreds of species in our little swampy, foresty, grassy, boggy area, to say nothing of the gardens!  In fact, one year the children and I even started notebooks about some of them but that project petered out.  It was the 100-Species Challenge that finally gave me some structure for tackling my dream.   My goal is to post, every so often,  about some of the plants and animals in our eastern Ontario paradise.   

(Melissa Wiley  made the button and has compiled a list of the participants.)

If you’re interested in joining, this is how it works:

The 100-Species Challenge

1. Participants should include a copy of these rules and a link to this entry in their initial blog post about the challenge.
2. Participants should keep a list of all plant species they can name, either by common or scientific name, that are living within walking distance of the participant’s home. The list should be numbered, and should appear in every blog entry about the challenge, or in a sidebar.

3. Participants are encouraged to give detailed information about the plants they can name in the first post in which that plant appears.
4. Participants are encouraged to make it possible for visitors to their blog to find easily all 100-Species-Challenge blog posts.
5. Participants may post pictures of plants they are unable to identify, or are unable to identify with precision. They should not include these plants in the numbered list until they are able to identify it with relative precision. Each participant shall determine the level of precision that is acceptable to her; however, being able to distinguish between plants that have different common names should be a bare minimum.

6. Different varieties of the same species shall not count as different entries (e.g., Celebrity Tomato and Roma Tomato should not be separate entries); however, different species which share a common name be separate if the participant is able to distinguish between them (e.g., camillia japonica and camillia sassanqua if the participant can distinguish the two–“camillia” if not).

7. Participants may take as long as they like to complete the challenge.  You can make it as quick or as detailed a project as you like.


  1. Sarah says:

    This looks like a great idea. I’ve followed the link to the original post and it seems she never got beyond a handful of posts on the topic! I was hoping to see a ‘final post’ from her and she how many I recognized! Anyway, I may join in at some stage….

    1. Annie Kate says:

      I think this is one of those projects that’s easy to drop, but since it’s something I’ve wanted to do for years, I’m hoping to finish it. That’s why I linked to Melissa Wiley as well; she seems to have organized it a bit more for everyone, and I’m hoping to check out some of the other participants.

      Annie Kate

  2. […] Green dragon (Arisaema dracontium), is our family’s first entry in the 100-Species Challenge. […]

  3. […] Mallard ducks are our sixth entry in the 100-Species Challenge. […]

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