Hillside walk, 13 July 2015
This was a hot day and the hillside looks as dry as ever. The most pleasant location was under the oak trees within Canyon 8. That shady location has 13 oaks and 2 western sycamores. Higher up in Canyon 8, where there is no breeze, the hot, eerie stillness was so noticeable. Elsewhere on the hillside in exposed places it was simply hot, with the occasional breeze providing a small amount of relief.
Despite the hot day, several species are in full bloom. These include chaparral yucca (Hesperoyucca whipplei), leafy California buckwheat (Eriogonum fasciculatum sUBsp. foliolosum), dodder (Cuscuta sp.), and American lotus (Acmispon americanus var. americanus).
It's amazing how some species continue with remnant flowers for a substantial period after the main flowering. Even more amazing is when a few remnant flowers appear uncharacteristically out of season. Such is the case this week with chamise (Adenosema fasciculatum var. fasciculatum), which has just a couple of flower heads on one plant in Canyon 5. The other species that makes me wonder is blue elderberry (Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea), with flowers persisting on one specimen in Canyon 2. Everywhere else, including in Canyon 2, this species has not only finished flowering, but has gone to fruit; many have even dropped their fruit at this stage.