Posted by: Sandy Steinman | August 31, 2019

Santa Monica Mountains Wildflowers 8/30/19

Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area has a new report

This has been a year when almost any hike you take in a wild place is going to give you a gratifying display of wildflowers. The popular media has frequently provided us all with dramatic flower reports and suggestions of where to see the more spectacular displays. Added to that is the drama and beauty of the recovering burned landscapes here in the Santa Monica Mountains. All in all this is a flower season not to be missed.

Zuma Canyon Zuma Canyon Trail 8/26
         This is a canyon that thoroughly burned in the Woolsey Fire last November. It remained closed until about a month ago. Summer is not its best time but I wanted to see it and took an early morning hike. The first look was not encouraging, everything looked dun colored and wide open, no shade trees in evidence. But as I started walking I was surprised to see quite a few flowers in bloom. There were not great masses of flowers, but a flower here and another there. There were the summer blooming elderberry, morning glory, cliff aster, cuddled aster, bush mallow and California buckwheat. There were the autumn blooming cudweed aster, California fuchsia, and coast golden bush. I saw leather root, a flower that I don’t commonly see. In the final eighth of a mile there was water in the creek, something I haven’t seen in years. Along the banks there was scarlet monkey flower in bloom.

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