Human Flower Project

Orrington, MAINE USA

flag flower bed

parker basket thumb
Princeton, MAINE USA

Tuesday, April 05, 2005


For local color,  Northern California’s flowering state parks put the stress on “LOCAL.”

imageMt. Diablo Globelily

Photo: Hein Photography

Californians are enjoying an embarrassment of wildflowers this spring, and as this article from Inside Bay Area details, there’s precision to the abundance.

Among the 65 parks between San Francisco Bay and the eastern foothills, “there are a variety of different microclimates and habitats” each specially suited to certain wildflowers.

“At Black Diamond Regional Preserve, there’s a hot climate that’s popular with black sage, desert olive, Mount Diablo globelily….  The cool wet forests of Tilden Regional Park are inviting to cutleaf geranium. At Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve, the rocky outcroppings are comfy for asters, star tulips and rock daisies. The low-lying wetland soils of Coyote Hills Regional Park (are) home to brass buttons, water plantain, alkali heath and pickleweed. Then there’s the serpentine soil around Sunol, the only place that something like the smooth lessingia can grow.”

Microclimates rule here in Central Texas, too. Kim Lehman, who lives in East Austin, has camellias in bloom, whereas friends in West Austin grow ocotillo cactus. Those of us living betwixt those two flowering worlds are often just stumped and resort to yet another ho-humble salvia.

Nature pays no attention to county lines and national borders; what flourishes on the south face may never set root on the other side of the mountain. For wildflower lookers, the fact of microclimates is an invitation to hike far and wide. For independent-minded gardeners, it suggests if not keeping up with the Joneses, at least keeping an eye on them. If their Bourbon roses are doing well, yours will stand a good chance, too.



Posted by Julie on 04/05 at 01:29 PM
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