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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Clarkia speciosa subsp. immaculata (Pismo Clarkia)

Clarkia speciosa subsp. immaculata (Pismo Clarkia)

I chose the Pismo clarkia because it grows in the area surrounding Mardi’s home and nowhere else. It grows naturally in about 20 occurrences from the southern Edna Valley, south through the foothills and valleys of the Southern San Luis Range, ending east of Pismo Beach and Arroyo Grande (Huasna Valley).

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Why Grow Natives from Seeds?

by Marti Rutherford. You have probably wandered the nursery isles looking for the ever more popular native plants being sold. Do you ever consider how those plants have been propagated? Many, if not most, native plants in the nursery trade are propagated by cuttings. The nursery person knows what the plant will look like and behave like

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Spring Wildflowers in Northern Santa Barbara County

2018 has been a surprisingly good year for spring wildflowers. Except for the January deluge and some good March storms, this has been a fairly dry year. In late September, 2017, several spot fires burned along Rucker Rd. just north of Mission Hills near Lompoc, California. In spite of sparse rainfall, there has been encouraging regrowth on trees and shrubs and blooming of wildflowers.

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Seed Exchange

Seed Exchange

I know it seems too early to be thinking seeds. Many of my plants are just starting to bloom. I just wanted to remind those who are interested that the seed exchange is going to take place ate the October meeting before the main program. Let a few of your garden...

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Gardening Corner

A Commentary by John Nowak, Plant Sale co-Chairperson

The other day, while checking out at the grocery store, the cashier noticed my CNPS hat and asked me, “How do you become an environmentalist?” I thought for a moment and then I told him “I would start at home.”

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Plant Associations and the Geology of the Morros

Plant Associations and the Geology of the Morros

What you are seeing is a display of the underlying geology manifested in the soils that lie above the bedrock. The browning grasslands are floored with ‘melange’ of the Franciscan Formation, a unit composed of sheared shale and bits and pieces of the ancient seafloor that were squished into a subduction zone… kinda like what happens if you try and push a slice of pizza under a door.

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Froom Ranch Opinion, Neil Havlik

Submitted to SLO Tribune At the San Luis Obispo city Planning Commission meeting of Jan. 24 regarding the proposed continuing care facility known as Villaggio at the Froom Ranch, several commissioners wondered aloud if the project was not “a good project in the wrong...

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Pigs Attack the Saltmarsh of Morro Bay… again

Pigs Attack the Saltmarsh of Morro Bay… again

Wild pigs are again active in Morro Bay, causing damage while rooting for the tuberous reeds in the brackish freshwater seep zones close to the high tide line. This time they are at Shark Inlet. We last saw them in 2015 on both sides of the South Bay Boulevard bridge, and neither of the locations appear to have recovered.

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Event Calendar

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  • Chapter Meeting featuring Ethnobotany professor Kat Anderson
    7:00 pm-9:00 pm
    06-07-2018

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

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

    The CNPS San Luis Obispo monthly meeting is Thursday, June 7 at the San Luis Obispo Veterans Hall. From 7:00 to 7:30 pm we will have the usual social part of our monthly meeting, followed at 7:30 by a chapter business meeting.

    Program: The Ethnobotany and Associated Stewardship of California Black Oak/Mixed Conifer Forest Ecosystems in the Central and Southern Sierra Nevada as a Model for Restoring Forest Health: Ethnobotany professor Kat Anderson.

    Kat Anderson has a Ph.D. in Wildland Resource Science from UC Berkeley and is the author of the book Tending the Wild: Native American Knowledge and the Management of California’s Natural Resources. The book was recently chosen by the celebrated permaculture designer Ben Falk, as one of the most important books to read in order to permanently solve food security. Kat has worked with Native Americans for over 25 years, learning how indigenous people judiciously gather and steward native plants and ecosystems in the wild. Her interests are to learn about, celebrate, and restore the similar plant uses, gathering and tending practices, and ethical stances towards nature that are in multiple local cultures here and all around the world.

    This talk will discuss the importance of California black oak and associate trees and understory species of the mixed conifer forests to the indigenous people of the Sierra Nevada for food, clothing, basketry, firewood, medicines, and household utensils. The audience will learn about the tremendous stewardship legacy of Sierran Tribes: how they knocked the oak trees with long poles and pruned the branches which helped shape the trees canopies and removed dead or dying wood, and may have spurred new fruitwood growth. Black oaks were managed at the ecosystem level with frequent, low intensity Indian-set fires, in order to open up the forest, promote widely-spaced large-canopied, long-lived oaks and conifers with less insects and pathogens, foster useful legumes, and encourage edible and medicinal mushrooms. I will explore some of the potential results of indigenous stewardship that may contribute to forest health including enhanced mycorhizzal relationships with oaks and conifers, nutrient cycling, soil fertility, enhanced soil moisture-holding capacity, and biological action in the soil.

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  • Five of the Morros of San Luis Obispo County
    7:30 am-9:00 pm
    06-23-2018

    Islay Hill Trail, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    Islay Hill Trail, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    Saturday, June 23

    Join us for a day on the Morros and learn which plants grow on each of these volcanic plugs.  Ascend one, two, or more. Here are the start times.

    • 7:30 a.m. Islay Hill, 2 miles, 500 ft. gain, moderate. The easternmost of the Morros, with views of five others. To trailhead, take Tank Farm Rd. east past Orcutt Rd, then south on Spanish Oaks Dr., then east on Sweet Bay Lane to end.
    • 9:00 a.m. Cerro San Luis, 4 miles, 1,100 ft. gain, moderate. Has knockout views of SLO. Trailhead at the end of Marsh St., just before on-ramp to Hwy 101 south.
    • Lunch (optional): 11:15 am to 12:00 pm, Throop Park, corner of Cerro Romauldo Street and Cuesta Drive, in SLO.
    • 12:00 p.m. Bishop Peak, 3.5 miles, 950 ft. gain, moderately strenuous. Highest of all the Morros. From Hwy 1, go west on Highland Dr., then right on Patricia Drive. Park at trailhead on Patricia Dr. just before reaching Anacapa Circle.
    • 3:30 p.m. Cerro Cabrillo, 2.5 miles, 800 ft. gain, moderately strenuous. 360-degree views from the Santa Lucia Mts. to coastline. Meet at Quarry Trail trailhead on South Bay Blvd, 1.4 miles south of Hwy 1 or 0.4 miles north of Turri Rd.
    • 6:00 p.m. Black Hill, 3.0 miles, 650 ft. gain, moderate. Ocean views from Montaña de Oro north to San Simeon. From South Bay Blvd, drive into Morro Bay State Park on State Park Road.  Meet at the parking area on the north side of the road, next to restrooms opposite the boat marina, just east of the campground entrance.

    Bring water (if hiking more than one Morro, store extra water in your vehicle), lunch and snacks, and dress in layers for changing weather. The day is likely to start and end cool but be quite warm at mid-day. A hat, sunscreen, and sturdy hiking shoes are essential. For more information, contact Bill, (805) 459-2103, bill.waycott@gmail.com.

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Resources

  • Black -tailed deer copyright Marlin Harms
    Gardening in deer-prone areas
  • By Andy Murray (New Zealand honey bee on clover) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
    Honeybees and Native Plants
  • submit your photo
    Opening the World through Journaling
  • California native plant sources image
    Nurseries and Sources for Native Plants
  • copyright marlin harms
    Native Plants with Fragrance
  • mountain bluebird c Marlin Harms
    California Native Plants that Attract Birds
  • Plants that Attract Butterflies

Native Plants

  • cirsium occidentale var compacta
    Cirsium occidentale var. compactum
  • Erigeron glaucus
    Erigeron glaucus
  • Brodiaea terrestris c Marlin Harms
    Brodiaea terrestris
  • Bloomeria humilis
    Bloomeria humilis
  • Calystigia subacaulis var. episcopalis
    Calystigia subacaulis var. episcopalis
  • Senegalia greggii

Native Plants