Wildflower season is getting pretty scarce here, and we tried to get in one more hike before everything dries up. 30 minutes south of SF there’s a cool place called Edgewood Natural Preserve just outside of Redwood City. (oh, btw…we did this hike about 4 wks ago). Kudos to Megan…she did all the leg work trying to identify the names on these guys with the help of their wildflower identifier tool. There’s always a chance that the ID is off, but hey…we try. Check out this Chlorogalum pomeridianum above. These California native perennials grow from bulbs and can be lathered into a soapy foam in your hands with a little water.
Calochortus luteus is another bulb grower that likes our western coast. I didn’t realize it until now, but Megan just saw these in Tiburon on her solo trip.
Sounds like Bellardia trixago are a little obnoxious out in the Bay Area. Native to the Mediterranean, here it grows like a weed and likes to seek out neighboring roots. After latching on to them, it starts stealing nutrients from their wildflower buddies.
Butterflies dig the nectar from this Lotus scoparius var scoparius. Extra bonus, their larvae enjoy munching on this guy too. Seems like a great plant to have if you adore attracting some winged friends. Wildscaping does a great in-depth write up to check out.
So we were hiking along and…OMGosh we saw a big old snake. Actually, Megan saw it first. Sensing her slight panic…I just froze. Another two feet and my foot would have been stepping on it. Oh, did I say it was big? Okay, only 4-5 feet long…but still a little freaky.
Not certain why maybe a guy thing, but I felt the urge to get super close to it to see if it had a rattle. Well, it didn’t so I felt safer. What we saw next was awesome. It slithered along for a couple minutes then jetted straight down what looked like a gopher hole. Crazy.
Okay, Matti has a new favorite common name for a plant. Yes, Achyrachaena mollis is also known as Blow Wives. I must work that into conversation some time today.
Gnaphalium californicum grows readily up and down most of the West Coast. NOTE we don’t recommend this, but heard that people brew this guy into a make shift tea. Any harvesters out there do this regularly?
Maybe it’s because this is one of the few flowers that I can regularly identify, or the name just rolls off my tongue…but I love Mimulus. Seems to grow well in a variety of soils and sorta a work horse in the landscape. Hey, you know who has the heartbeat on CA wildflowers? Phyte Club. You must swing by their blog and give them a read.
– Far Out Flora