Posted by: Sandy Steinman | May 3, 2011

Point Reyes and Big Rock Ridge- Updated 5/3/11

Updated 5/3/11
Photos Added

Today didn’t go exactly as planned, but we still saw some flowery places.  Driving out to Chimney Rock at Pt. Reyes the weather changed from sun to fog.  The overcast weather made for good wildflower photography light, but the winds did not.  The Yellow Bush Lupine bloom was outstanding in places.  Cow Parsnip and California Poppies were often seen along the road.  The all yellow Point Reyes Meadowfoam (Limnanthes douglassi ssp.sulpurea)  that is only found in Marin and San Mateo Counties was blooming and more profuse than on previous trips.  The curvy hillsides past Historic Ranch B were loaded with wildflowers.  Plants in bloom included Pussy Ears ( Calochortus tolmeii), California Poppies, Mule’s Ear, Douglas Iris, Buttercups, Checker Mallow, Yarrow, Hedge Nettle, Lupine, Foot-steps-of-Spring, Strawberry, Chickweed, Morning Glory, Yellow Monkey Flower, Suncups, Fiddlenecks. After a few hours of photographing flowers in the cold wind.  We skipped Chimney Rock, which would be even more windy, and opted for a hot lunch at Priscilla’s Pizzeria and Cafe in Inverness.

On the way home we stopped at Big Rock Ridge (there is a huge rock on the northern side of the road), which is the highest point on Lucas Valley road.  The southern side  was very flowery and it is the beginning of the Big Rock Ridge Fire Road, which we followed for maybe a quarter of a mile.  There were large areas of Goldfields.  Also seen were Tidytips, California Poppies, Golden Monkey Flowers, Hog Fennel (lomatium), Red Maids, a yellow Triphysaria (?), Phlox, Cream Cups, Yarrow, Owl’s Clover, Plectritis and a pink clover.

Lucas Valley Road also had a lot of the whitish Del Norte Iris in bloom.

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  1. Was the Tryphysaria on Chimney Rock? If so I was calling it Triphysaria floribunda, based on a Chimney Rock plant list that Marin CNPS recently put up after a visit there.


    • I looked in the Marin Flora and Triphysaria floribunda is described as creamy white. Triphysaria versicolor ssp. faucibarbata is the only one listed as yellow. The yellow Triphysaria (?) was on Big Rock Ridge and I am not positive it was a Triphpysaria. The white one I have a picture of in the slide show I believe is Triphysaria versicolor ssp. faucibarata, but could have been T. floribunda and was found on the hills past “B” Ranch which had flowers very similar to Chimney Rock. We never made it to Chimney Rock due to the winds.


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