In Scouting, no matter what the program or activity, Leave No Trace should never be an after thought.
Picking specimen samples of foliage or stones does harm the environment and should never be practiced.
Recently my scout friends and I conducted an outdoors event that proved to be highly successful however; one of the comments that came back was to pick various samples of plant life to show the scouts how wildlife uses such specimens for food and shelter.
To take these samples would not only damage the plant life but would also place stress on those animals that would need these plants for shelter and a food source.
Removing rocks, stones, and even pebbles from a trail would increase the chances of soil erosion and harm the creatures that may live underneath those objects.
Appreciate the natural beauty of our environment and our natural surroundings by photographing the area, pick up the items that do not belong there, and leave no trace that you have been there.
It is a virtue that all mankind should practice and put to good use.
Mother Nature will thank you for it.