Featured Plants

An in-depth look at a plant – what makes it special, it’s characteristics, where to find it in the natural landscape, and other notables. Common non-native and invasive plants are occasionally reported about.

Clarkia speciosa subsp. immaculata (Pismo Clarkia)

Clarkia speciosa subsp. immaculata (Pismo Clarkia)

Pismo Clarkia

Text by Dirk Walters; art by Mardi Niles.

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). read more…

Viola pedunculata (Johnny-jump-up)

Wild (California, yellow, or grass) violet, pansy or Johnny –jump-up This botanical illustration was created by Mardi Niles using a Micron 005 #1 Archival Ink pen and Prismacolor Verithin colored pencils on Bristol Regular paper. It will be the first of several...

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Common Milkweed (kotolo) Asclepias eriocarpus

The cover drawing and article for this issue of the OBISPOENSIS was written and drawn by Alice Meyer. She was a very active member (and first Hoover Award Recipient in the 1970 and 80’s. She is the one who named our newsletter, OBISPOENSIS, and served as its editor...

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Coast Live Oak

Dirk Walters, illustration by Bonnie Walters Oaks have been in the news a lot recently. Essentially all of it has been bad from the Oak’s point of view. First, there was the clearing of valley (Quercus lobata) and blue (Q. douglasii) oaks in the Paso Robles area. and...

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Common (White) Yarrow (Achillea millefollium)

Common (White) Yarrow (Achillea millefollium) The plant discussed in this issue of the Obispoensis is one that I’ve wanted to take on for a long time, but could never bring myself to ask Bonnie to draw. Since we are using photos to illustrate it by, I think it’s time....

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Fall Color

O.K.... so we’re not Vermont. However we do have some pretty fall color displays. If you like the gold of aspen, you will see the same colors in our closely related cottonwood stands, both trees belonging to the genus Populus. Cottonwoods are riparian trees, and the...

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Ceanothus hearstiorum

Introduction October and November are when our Chapter gets serious about growing native plants. We have a November meeting devoted to it as well as our annual plant sale. This got me to remembering some articles written and drawings drawn by Alice G. Meyer that are...

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Solidago californica

California Goldenrod (Solidago velutina ssp. californica or S. californica) The photo by Dr. David Chipping that accompanies this note are of the California goldenrod (Solidago velutina ssp. californica or Solidago californica). According to Dr. Hoover in his Vascular...

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Oenothera deltoides

Desert Evening Primrose (Oenothera deltoides) Desert evening primrose (Oenothera deltoides) is in full bloom at Shell Creek as I write this. So it seemed appropriate to resurrect a drawing Bonnie drew back in 1981. It is one of her earlier drawings since it shows a...

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Cucurbita palmata

Coyote melon Bonnie’s drawing for this issue of Obispoensis is based on a picture sent to me by George Butterworth. The species, Cucurbita palmata, has many common names. The ones I found on the web include coyote melon, coyote gourd, desert gourd, palmate-leafed...

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Quercus Kelloggii

Kellogg Oak The following is an article from February 1993. It was chosen by the editor to spare me the choice since Bonnie and I were away in late October. We totally agree with his choice; we had totally forgotten about it. The repeat of this article reminds me that...

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Antirrhinum ovatum

Oval Leaved Snapdragon Drawing by Bonnie and article by Dr. Malcolm McLeod below appeared in the November, 1991 Obispoensis.   When you read it you will see lots of similarities with our current drought situation as well as the much hoped for possibilities of an...

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Cornus sericea

Creek Dogwood For this issue of the Obispoensis, I’m going out on a limb so to speak. Since the plant is a very small tree or moderately sized shrub, that limb will prove to be slender. The plant is the red osier, creek, or as stated in the new Jepson California...

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Atriplex patula

Spear Orache, Spear Salt Bush As I write this article, it’s August in the year of California’s third most severe drought. There’s not much out there in bloom. So I’ve retreated to one of the few places where plants are doing anything. Yes, I’m returning to the coastal...

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Calandrinia ciliata

Red Maids Bonnie’s drawing for this issue of Obispoensis is of a plant that is found throughout the western United States as well as spreading north into British Columbia. It has also been recorded in a couple of South American countries. It is especially common in...

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Valley Oak Snag

We are going back into the archives for this cover of Obispoensis. The landscape is a drawing of the Shell Creek area that Bonnie drew for the December 1991 cover. The inset is an ID drawing of the leaves and acorn of the valley oak. Why would one want to combine...

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Erodium moschatum

Filaree Erodium moschatum & E. cicutarium I assume it is not news to anyone that California in general and the Central Coast in particular has been experiencing an extreme drought. That means that most native plants that are adapted to this situation have been in...

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Vernal Pool with Downingia

Vernal Pools occur where there is moderate to large sized “natural” depression with no outlet. The depression has to be large enough to capture enough rainfall to fill the pond to some depth. The water collects in the lowest point in the depression. There also must be...

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Mystery Manzanita in the Elfin Forest

All three of Bonnie’s drawings this time are of manzanitas. One is a repeat of the endemic rare plant commonly known as Morro manzanita or Arctostaphylos morroensis. As you will see, it is included here to serve as a basis of comparison. The other two drawings are...

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Cynodon dactylon

Bermuda Grass It’s November in a very dry year which was preceded by a dry year. Most native plants are waiting for the rains. The small amount of rain that fell in the last week in October I doubt will be considered significant, i.e., sufficient enough to initiate...

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Dendromecon rigida

Bush Poppy A funny thing happened while Bonnie and I were working on the drawing and article for and about the plant discussed in this issue of Obispoensis. Before we started, we consulted Dirk’s list of past drawings and could not find any entry for Bush Poppy,...

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Silene laciniata

Coastal catchfly Late summer or early fall (or more appropriately “late dry season”) is a downtime in our local wilds, especially true when we've had no significant rain after December. Even the animals seem to be resting. But if one looks carefully in our coastal...

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Calystegia macrostegia

Coastal Morning Glory (California) The plant featured on the June 2013 cover of the Obispoensis was chosen because of a request. It is the California, coast, island, or wild morning glory (Calystegia macrostegia). The common name, false bindweed, is sometimes used...

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Fremontodendron californicum

Flannel Bush This month’s cover drawing by Bonnie Walters is a repeat of flannel bush, Fremontodendron californicum. It was last used on the Obispoensis cover back in 1991. Does anybody remember it? Fremontodendron classification It is being reused now due to a...

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< 2017 >
October
  • 05

    7:00 pm-9:00 pm
    10-05-2017
    SLO Vets Hall
    801 Grand Ave, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    The October meeting of the California Native Plants Society will take place on Thursday evening, October 5th, from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the SLO Vets’ Hall, 801 Grand Ave. in San Luis Obispo.

    The first half of the meeting will be devoted to a California native seed exchange. If you have an interest in planting native seeds and/or have native seeds to share with others, you are asked to come prepared to participate. During the  meetings, seed traders will share their tips on how to plant the seeds and grow the plants, they brought to share.

    The second half of the meeting will feature presentations by local members, reporting on botanical places of interest they visited during the summer. Join us for refreshments (please bring a dessert to share) and some exciting photographs and stories of forays into the wild. If you would like to present some of your tales of discovery out in nature, bring your photos in a viewable format to the meeting, on a thumb drive, or you can e-mail your photos to David Chipping (dchippin@calpoly.edu), 24 hours before the meeting. Dave can also answer any questions about formatting your photos.

  • 07

    9:00 am-1:00 pm
    10-07-2017
    Nipomo Native Garden
    927-999 Osage St, Nipomo, CA 93444, USA

    NIPOMO NATIVE GARDEN FALL PLANT SALE

    Saturday, October 7th, 9AM to 1 PM

    Nipomo Native Garden Parking Lot on Osage. Take 101 to Tefft to Pomeroy, left on Camino Caballo. Right on Osage.

    There will be a wide variety of landscaping plants, many drought tolerant grasses, shrubs, trees. Also –

    • Tee Shirts & Caps
    • Information and advice
    • Great Plants – Great Prices

    Plus Grand Opening of Little Free Library!

    For more information 929-3589 or cjelinek@calpoly.edu

  • 17

    11:00 am-4:00 pm
    10-17-2017
    Growing Grounds Farm Wholesale Nursery
    3740 Orcutt Rd, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401, USA

    Growing Grounds Farm is a non-profit wholesale nursery located in San Luis Obispo. Growing Grounds offers California natives, Mediterranean perennials, succulents, restoration and mitigation plants, a wide variety of grasses, and a selection of perennial herbs.

    Growing Grounds Farm is a wholesale nursery and does not sell directly to the public except on the 3rd Tuesday of each month from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m

  • 22

    2:00 pm-4:00 pm
    10-22-2017
    San Luis Obispo Botanical Garden
    3450 Dairy Creek Rd, San Luis Obispo, CA 93405, USA

    Sunday, Oct. 22nd2:00-4:00 pm, iNaturalist Workshop, San Luis Obispo Botanical Garden

    Have you ever thought about keeping track of your own nature observations in an organized way so you could refer back to them? What if you could easily do that, as well as share your observations and photographs taken in nature, with a group of like-minded people online? Would you like to make meaningful contributions to scientific research? “Citizen science” is ordinary people contributing to scientific research and iNaturalist is the place to get started with any or all of the above.

    Join us to discuss how to use the iNaturalist website and mobile applications, what the options are, and how to customize your iNaturalist account for your personal interests. This workshop, led by Damon Tighe and Bill Waycott, will be a combination of hands-on classroom and field work.

    In preparation for the workshop, please sign up for an iNaturalist account online and create your profile. If you plan to use your mobile device(s), download and install the mobile app(s) on Android and IOS, prior to the workshop.  After the classroom component, we will visit the garden to use iNaturalist in real-time.  The SLO Botanical Garden is located in Chorro Regional Park, off of Hwy 1, across from Cuesta College and adjacent to the Dairy Creek Golf Course.