Dedicated to the preservation of California's native plants

The mission of the California Native Plant Society is to increase understanding and appreciation of California’s native plants and to conserve them and their natural habitats through education, science, advocacy, horticulture and land stewardship.

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Centennial Development at Tejon Ranch

Centennial Development at Tejon Ranch

The LA County Board of Supervisors will consider whether or not to approve the proposed Centennial development next Tuesday, December 11. Although this project is located in LA County, we believe this is an issue that impacts all of California, both in terms of our...

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Save the date

CNPS-SLO ANNUAL BANQUET WILL BE HELD JANUARY 12, 2019 AT THE MORRO BAY VETS HALL.  Details coming...

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Toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolium)

Toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolium)

Toyon, Heteromeles arbutifolium is a wonderful, hardy, native California evergreen shrub. It can be a good screen in the yard, growing up to 6 feet fairly quickly. It tolerates soils from serpentine to clay, to sand. It is not as flammable as other chaparral shrubs. It is a great forage plant for bees, butterflies, and …

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Membership News

Your gifts of membership are what sustain the chapter and ensures our vital work in conservation, education, horticulture and plant science continues to grow and flourish.

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Wildflowers of San Luis Obispo 2nd Edition

Wildflowers of San Luis Obispo 2nd Edition

The Revised and Expanded 2nd Edition of our wonderful Wildflowers of San Luis Obispo, California has arrived just in time for the holidays! 20 new plants have been added and the SLO City open space map has been updated including trailhead directions. The new cover photograph of Woolly Blue Curls with the distant view of an oak studded grassy hillside puts you on our Central Coast.

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Invasive Species Report – Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Invasive Species Report – Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

The extremely invasive Foeniculum vulgare is in the carrot (Apiaceae) family. It is native to Southern Europe and is problematic in coastal California and is also present throughout the western US all the way to Texas. I’ve encountered Fennel on Santa Catalina Island...

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President’s Message December 2018

President’s Message December 2018

In past issues of Obispoensis, I have noted some of my observations on the impact of invasive plants in our state – their negative effects and a bit on their historical introductions. My musings on the origins of such a domineering presence by these plants,  led me to...

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Growing Native Plants from Seeds is Fun

Growing Native Plants from Seeds is Fun

For a native plant novice like me, joining the California Native Plant Society seemed like a good idea so I became a member of the San Luis Obispo chapter. My spouse and I attended our first meeting a year ago last October. That is where I met Marti and the real fun began.

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Botta’s pocket gopher

Botta’s pocket gopher

Last month we discussed California ground squirrel problems, this month I will focus on the gopher aka Botta’s pocket gopher (Thomomys bottae). For most of us, gophers can sometimes be a headache but a livable one. They come and go between you and your neighbor’s yard, only losing a couple of plants a year. For yards like these I recommend using …

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Salvia spathacea (Hummingbird Sage)

Salvia spathacea (Hummingbird Sage)

The cover of this Obispoensis is another beautiful water color by Heather Johnson. In our area Hummingbird sage can grow in an extensive mat. Its leaves are large (10 in (20 cm) long and 3 in (8 cm) wide). The leaf surface appears quilted. Its family affiliation (Mint or Lamiaceae or Labitae) is shown clearly in Heather’s water color.

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Defeat Dudleya Poaching through Propagation

Defeat Dudleya Poaching through Propagation

California Dudleyas are easy to grow. Illegal wild collection can be disrupted via legal propagation. I propagate Dudleya with middle school science classes. If seventh-graders can grow these natives from seed, you can too. Home gardens are a good source of Dudleya...

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In Memory of Bill Deneen

In Memory of Bill Deneen

Bill Deneen, long time CNPS member, Hoover Awardee, and champion of the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes died at the age of 93 in September. Bill taught biology at Santa Maria High School  for 25 years, during which time he became a passionate advocate for the environment.

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Event Calendar

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  • Seed Exchange
    6:00 pm-7:15 pm
    10-04-2018

    801 Grand Ave, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    801 Grand Ave, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    seeds image

    The seed exchange is back!

    The workshop time slot (6.00-7.15) before the October meeting is reserved for our second seed exchange. So think seed collection. There will be a few minor differences. There has been a request to provide a picture of the plant that the seeds will become. This will help those who might not be familiar with the names choose plants they want to try. Our chapter will supply seed envelopes so we will be asking those bringing seeds to just bring a bulk collection of cleaned seeds labelled with genus and species, where and when it was collected and a picture. There is no need to spend your time separating into little envelopes.

    The seed exchange is an opportunity to share seeds from native plants which are growing in your landscape. We will not sell seed. Do remember the legal issues of seed collection. It is illegal to collect seed from private property and public spaces without permission. If you happen to have access to rare plant seed DO NOT collect it. That seed should be reserved for seed banks and those with the skills to nurture the plant to maturity.

    Keep in mind that a collection of plants grown from seed has more genetic diversity than plants grown from cuttings. Depending upon what your goal is that may be a positive point. But garden grown plant seed is not ideal for restoration planting. One would want the more pure genetics of a wild population to use for restoration. Plants grown from seed might not be like the parent plant.

    There is an article on our website under Resources that has information on seed collection and cleaning (link). You might find it helpful. Find it under Resources > Growing Natives.

  • Dessert Potluck and Members’ Slide Show
    7:00 pm-9:00 pm
    10-04-2018

    801 Grand Ave, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    801 Grand Ave, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    Bring a dessert to share and your 15 best digital photos. Please bring them on a flash drive and number/letter titles consecutively if you wish to show them in a particular order.

    The meeting will be preceded by a Seed Exchange at 6pm.

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  • Trivia Night
    6:00 pm-8:00 pm
    10-12-2018

    570 Higuera St #104, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    570 Higuera St #104, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

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  • Autumn walk in Atascadero
    9:00 am-12:00 pm
    10-14-2018

    9943-9949 Carmelita Ave, Atascadero, CA 93422, USA

    9943-9949 Carmelita Ave, Atascadero, CA 93422, USA

    Sunday, Oct. 14th, 9:00 am to 12:00 noon, Autumn walk in Atascadero.

    Join us on the new trail at Three Bridges Oak Preserve. This trail starts in a lovely blue oak woodland, ascends into chaparral, and ends in stands of madrone and views towards the east. It is 4 miles up and back, ascending 800 ft.  Come to learn the easy to identify plant and animal species.  To reach the trailhead, use a smart phone for guidance, because there are several windy streets involved.  Make sure to bring water and snacks. Sturdy shoes, sunscreen, hats, and layered clothing are recommended. No RSVP needed and dogs on a leash. Contact Bill Waycott, 805-459 2103. Rain or threat of rain cancels.

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November
November
November

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Native Plant Pictures on Flickr