Posted by: Sandy Steinman | March 13, 2018

Homestead Valley Land Trust Wildflowers 3/12/18

Homestead Valley Land Trust report below for  on March 12. See map and photos at Homestead Valley Land Trust

NEW
– California buttercup is starting to bloom bright yellow in meadows.
– California huckleberry with its small white lantern flowers is blooming in forests.
– California plantain almost too small to see but getting very close is rewarded with the many translucent disks of its flower
– Miner’s lettuce one of our most popular edibles, has a small white flower. Claytonia had a false start with the early season rains but is coming on well now that they are picking up.
– Oakland star tulip one of our rare plants, has a small delicate cup flower well worth scrutinizing in meadows.
– White flowered onion*, edible and native to the Mediterranean, is blooming in wet spots with its white cone flowers. Pull it up by the roots if you can.

Forests
Starting
– Fairy bells cream flowers hang below the leaves of this woodland plant.
– False lily of the valley with its star white flower always seems to bloom first near the Madrone Park Circle bench (14) but is coming up all over and will brighten the forests soon.
– Forget-me-nots, native to Europe, is one of our most successful invaders. Easy to pull, easiest to identify when it’s flowering, so pull it then.
– Manroot, a native vine with large maple-shaped leaves is blooming white as it climbs.
– Milkmaids, a pretty white flower with arugula-tasting leaves is blooming in forests.
Peaking
– Canyon gooseberry is blooming at the Ridgewood u-bend, trailhead to 13 and in the forests where huckleberry grows. The flowers are very small, blooming on almost bare branches as they emerge with the leaves.
– Indian warrior is a ruby carpet at 15 right along the Homestead Trail – that we finished clearing a few months ago.
– Scotch broom, native to Western Europe, one of the most aggressive invaders of our meadows is blooming with its yellow pea flowers. Pull it before it goes to seed if you can.
– Tasmanian blue gum, is blooming white high in the huge eucalyptus trees.
– Trillium are bright white or pale pink in their bed of three green leaves on the forest floor.
Fading
– Coast live oak blooms with pink tassels.
– California bay laurel, our most common native tree’s blooms have a delicate vanilla scent.
– Fetid adder’s tongue, one of our most exotic blooms is blooming in large patches.
– Green wattle acacia tree native to Australia is starting to bloom with its bright yellow puff flowers.
– Oso berry, our native plum, is just starting to bloom on the Ridgewood Rock.

Forest edges
Starting
– California blackberry is blooming with paper-white flowers, on a thinner, trailing vine than Himalayan blackberry.
– Sourgrass*, native to South Africa, is blooming up on the ridge. Although fun to chew on for kids, this plant is a very successful non-native spreading in wet locations where natives might otherwise grow.
– Spring gold is blooming yellow on the Ridgewood Rock.
– Woodland strawberry blooms are starting now where there is sun, will persist for months in different habitats as they warm.
Peaking
– Barberry, hollylike leaves and clusters of fragrant, yellow flowers.
Fading
– Blackwood acacia, native to Australia, is blooming with yellow puff flowers.
– Cherry plum, native to Southeast Europe, is blooming bright white and sweet around the valley.
– Greene’s saxifrage’s small white flowers are opening on a moss covered shelf of the Ridgewood Rock.
– Pacific hounds tongue with its forget-me-not-looking flowers and large leaves is blooming now in oak meadows. There are also tons of emerging leaves promising a big year for this wildflower.

Meadows
Starting
– Blue dicks is starting to bloom on Coyote Rock and along the Homestead Fire Road above the Waterview trailhead.
– California poppy, one of the longest bloomers, is bright orange in meadows up on the ridge.
– Checkerbloom’s bright pink is starting to bloom on the ridges of Homestead Hill.
– Chickweed, native to Europe, medicinal and edible is blooming with its white star flower.
– French broom, native to the Mediterranean, is one of our most aggressive invaders and also one of the easiest to pull.
– Ground iris is blooming purple in meadows.
– Suncups on the ground with yellow flowers is starting down near 13 but will be on the ridge and in meadows soon.
– Woolly lomatium’s cream colored discs are blooming above Homestead Fire Road near Panoramic.
Peaking
– Checker lily, brown lily-bell flower with leopard print cup. Look for it at the forest edge or sheltered in meadows.
– Footsteps of spring are bright yellow, hugging the ground up on the ridge.
– Fremont’s deathcamas is blooming white wherever a bit of meadow peaks out from the shrubs.
– Marin checker lily with its chocolate bell flowers is blooming in the meadow below Amaranth.
– Shooting star with its bright pink flowers is blooming at trail junction 9, on the Ridgewood Rock and below Amaranth.

See map and photos at Homestead Valley Land Trust

 


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