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The original item was published from 9/17/2019 10:40:19 AM to 10/2/2019 12:00:02 AM.

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Purcellville News Flash

Posted on: September 17, 2019

[ARCHIVED] News Release - Monthly Nature Walk on Sunday, September 29

PURCELLVILLE, Va., SEPTEMBER 17, 2019 — Join the Purcellville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board at the Chapman DeMary Trail on Sunday, September 29 at 1 p.m. Learn about the history of plants used to create natural dyes, find plants that can be used to make natural dyes, use black walnut husks to dye yarn, and ink from these nuts to sketch. Nancy Reaves, who has led many walks at the Chapman DeMary Trail, served on the Purcellville Library Board, and volunteers with the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy, will lead this activity and guide a hike while sharing suggestions for how to use natural dyes in an environmentally friendly way. Dress appropriately for being in a wooded area. Register online to participate.

The walk will start with a talk about the dye process and a demonstration about how to dye yarn with black walnut husks. While the yarn is absorbing the dye, Ms. Reaves will lead a walk along the trail, pointing out plants that can be used to make natural dyes, such as black walnuts which are falling this time of the year. At the end of the walk, people will have a chance to open the husks of the black walnuts, use brushes to sketch with the black walnut ink, and take home a sample of the dyed yarn along with the recipes for the dye and the ink.

The Chapman DeMary Trail is a 10-acre area considered to be the last stand of old-growth forest in the Town of Purcellville. It runs along the South Fork Catoctin Creek, part of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. The area is open to the public for environmental recreation, exploration, and education. The Town of Purcellville holds the conservation easement for this privately-owned property. The entrance and parking for the Chapman DeMary Trail is behind the building at 205 East Hirst Road in Purcellville.

The Discover Nature’s Secrets guided nature walks are held the last Sunday of each month and hosted by the Purcellville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board. Throughout 2019, walks will be led by experts from The Piedmont Environmental Council, the Virginia Department of Forestry, Loudoun County Tree Stewards, Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy, and a variety of other experts. Topics include wildlife clues, wildflowers, natural dyes, native plants, pollinators, art and nature, tree identification, and more.

Learn more and register online on the Monthly Nature Walks page in the Events and Activities section of the Town of Purcellville’s website at

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