Hillside walk, 10 August 2015
Today is particularly cool for a summer's day. The cool weather, or is it the rain three weeks ago, brings a small upsurge in the number of flowering natives. The four o'clock (Mirabilis laevis var. carssifolia) both on the north hillside and in Canyon 2B has plenty of fresh leaves and some flowers. the coffeeberry (Frangula californica) has fresh flowers.
I know of two coffeeberry trees, both on the north slop; one is on the ridge, giving it maximum sunshine. The other, about 100 meters away, is on the steep slop going down into Canyon 8, this being a slightly more protected location, — this is the coffeeberry with today's flowers.
Within the large clumps of white sage (Salvia apiana) on the north hillside, just a single stem has three flowers. That's unusual.
As was the case last week, a solitary, small California bluebell (Phacelia minor) on the north hillside is in bloom.
Also on the north hillside was a single bloom of morning glory (Calystegia sp.)
New for the season, at the very bottom of the north hillside, in the wash of Canyon 8, California mugwort (Astemisia douglasiana) has begun blooming. On the upper north hillside are buds of narrow leaf milkweed (Asclepias fascicularis), which look like they will open within the next few days. Hopefully they will still be in bloom for next week's walk.
The great characteristic of this time of year, the saw toothed goldenbush (Hazardia squarrosa) continues it blooming on the north hillside.
An unsavory outcome of the recent rain is a host of new castor bean seedlings. Last week I removed many. Today I removed many more. What were last week cotyledons are this week's little castor bean trees. Ugh! This is in the Lida Street horseshoe bend. Perhaps this plant originates in a more tropical climate that has wet summers.