In 2014, the Field Botanists of Ontario present the 8th John Goldie Award to Dorothy Tiedje. This award is given annually to an individual or organization whose efforts have made a significant contribution to field botany in the province of Ontario. The award honours John Goldie who conducted botanical surveys in Upper Canada and beyond in the early 1800’s, mostly on foot.
Dorothy and her late husband, John Tiedje, have been members of the
Field Botanists of Ontario since its creation in 1984 and were present at the
first meeting at Red Bay that year. They thoroughly enjoyed the many
FBO outings and workshops and the friends they made. Dorothy was on the FBO
board at one time, with meetings in Toronto. She led at least five field trips
for FBO including trips to Walpole Island (1989), Ausable River (1992), Sarnia
Howard Watson Trail (1995), and Port Franks (2005 and 2008).
It must be emphasized that Dorothy and John acted as a team for many
of the botanical activities for which she is being recognized by FBO. The
Goldie Award is not the first award that recognized their combined efforts. In
1999, they were given a Meritorious Service Award by Lambton Wildlife
Incorporated and they were included on the Lambton Wildlife Incorporated
President’s Honours list three times. Dorothy served on the Board of Lambton
Wildlife for many years and as president for one term. In 2007, they were given
an individual Conservation Award by Carolinian Canada for their work. In 2009
the Lambton Woodlot Owners’ Assn. gave them their yearly award.
Dorothy and John worked together for over 40 years to compile a
complete inventory of the vascular plants in Lambton County. In that time
they published 13 editions of that inventory [Tiedje, 2010]. That inventory
served as the basis for contributions to the Guide to the Natural Areas of
Lambton County [Catterson] in 2009 and to The Huron Shore Flyway report [Sarnia
Urban Wildlife Committee] in 2007. During her field inventories, she made a
number of significant plant discoveries, one of the most exciting of
which was the discovery of a new genus of native grass for Canada, Diarrhena obovata which she found in
1988 in the Ausable River Valley, Lambton County [Oldham, 1995].
Jane Bowles once said that John was good at spotting unusual plants.
Dorothy did the collecting, preserving, identifying and cataloguing.
Starting in 1963, (with Queen Anne’s Lace) Dorothy created a herbarium of
Lambton Co. vascular plants. They took a duplicate of each collection to UWO
where Jim Phipps, personally, in Dorothy’s presence, approved or corrected the
ID. From all available records, and from their own collections, Dorothy
compiled the list which John persuaded the computer to organize numerically as
to plant families and alphabetically as to species within the families. John
looked after the reproduction and printing. Dorothy also has a small collection
of Lambton mosses, liverworts, and lichens.
Dorothy’s contribution extended to helping students complete their
thesis work. In 1988 she helped Pascale Rettien with her thesis on Ulmus fulva (U .rubra, Slippery Elm from the Hungry Hollow woodlot) for the
Diplome d’etat de Docteur en Pharmacie at the Universite D’Aix, Marseille. She
worked with Nikki May on her MSc. on Volunteer Monitoring of Forest Restoration
at the University of Guelph in 2004 by identifying many plants collected for
that project. Also in 2004, she assisted Pak Kin Chan at York University with
field work for a thesis related to the Karner Blue Reserve at Port Franks. That
thesis was entitled “Plant Communities in Oak Savannahs in Ontario: Are we
ready for reintroduction of the Karner Blue Butterfly (Lycaeides melissa samuelis)?” Dorothy and John were involved with
hands-on efforts to aid FON/NCC volunteers remove the invasive Dog Strangling
Vine (Cynanchum nigrum) at the Port
Franks Forested Dunes Nature Reserve and to reduce the amounts of Knapweed on
the Howard Watson Nature Trail in Sarnia.
Dorothy and John made at least 25 wildflower presentations, based on
John’s superb photographs. Dorothy inventoried and listed plants on the Howard
Watson Trail, Canatara Park, and many other Lambton locations.
In April 2009, John and Dorothy donated the Tiedje Woods in Hungry
Hollow to the Thames Talbot Land Trust. The 6.1-ha (15-acre) wooded property is
located in the Ausable River Valley area of natural and scientific interest
(ANSI) and the Ausable River Valley Carolinian Canada site. It has been
certified as ecologically sensitive through the Eco-Gift Program administered
by the Canadian Wildlife Service.
Dorothy Tiedje has made outstanding contributions in documenting
Ontario plants, supporting the Field Botanists of Ontario and conserving
natural places. The Field Botanists of Ontario is pleased to recognize these
accomplishments by awarding Dorothy with the 2014 John Goldie Award.
Oldham, M., S.J.Darbyshire, D.McLeod, D.A. Sutherland, D.Tiedje, and J.M..
Bowles, 1995. New and noteworthy Ontario grass (Poaceae) records. The Michigan
Botanist 34: 105-132.
Tiedje, J, and D. Tiedje. 2010. Vascular Plants of Lambton County, Ontario.
14th Edit. Published by the authors. 66 pp.
The Huron Shore Flyway. 2007. Sarnia Urban Wildlife Committee
2nd Edit. 20 pp.
Catterson, G., 2009. Guide to the Natural Areas of Lambton County. 1st
Edition 2009. Lambton Wildlife Incorporated, Sarnia. 32 pp.