Flowers, Grasses and Herbs
Nemophila heterophylla is an annual herb with a fleshy but delicate and usually hairy stem. The bowl-shaped flower corolla is white or blue and a few millimeters (about 1/2 inch) to over a centimeter wide.
Sisyrinchium bellum; Found on upper trail near granite rock-outcropping.
Blue Fiesta Flower
Pholistoma auritum is a species of flowering plant in the borage family which is known by the common name blue fiesta flower.
Diplacus bolanderi is a hairy annual herb producing an erect stem reaching maximum heights anywhere from 2 to 90 centimeters. The lance-shaped to oval leaves are up to 6 centimeters long and arranged in opposite pairs about the stem. The base of the flower is encapsulated by a hairy ribbed calyx of sepals with pointed lobes. The flower has a tubular throat and a wide, five-lobed mouth. It is 1 to 3 centimeters long and pink in color, usually with blotches of white in the throat. We found a specimen in our orchard in May 2018.
Phacelia ramosissima is a species of phacelia known by the common name branching phacelia. It is native to western North America from British Columbia to California and the Southwestern United States, where it can be found in many types of habitat.
Lupinus albifrons is a perennial shrub, taking up about 2 ft of space and reaching 5 ft. It has a light blue to violet flower on 3–12 inch stalks. The leaves are silver with a feathery texture.
Butterfly Mariposa Lily
Calochortus venustus is a California species of flowering plants in the lily family. The species is endemic to California ranging from Shasta County to San Diego County, particularly common in the San Gabriel Mountains, the southern part of the Sierra Nevada, and the Coast Ranges between Oakland and Los Angeles. It thrives in the light, sandy soils of a number of habitats, both grasslands and open wooded areas, at 300–2,700 meters (980–8,860 ft) in altitude. We found a specimen on the fence line trail.
Eschscholzia californica is a perennial or annual plant with alternately branching blue-green foliage. The flowers are solitary on long stems with four petals. The flower color ranges through yellow, orange and red. It is the official state flower of California. We have many specimens around the house blooming throughout the summer months.
Cirsium occidentale var. californicum is a species of thistle endemic to California and in the sunflower family. The plant may be short or quite tall, forming low clumps. The leaves are dull gray-green to bright white due to a coating of hairs. The inflorescence at the top of the whitish stem holds one to several flower heads.
Trifolium obtusiflorum is a species of clover known that is native to California in the Peninsular, Transverse, Sierra Nevada, and the California Coast Ranges and Cascade Range into southwestern Oregon. It grows in moist habitat such as marshes and stream banks, and disturbed areas. We found this growing in our green house.
Nemophila maculata is an annual herb that flowers in the spring. The leaves are up to 3 centimeters long and 1.5 wide, and are divided into several smooth or toothed lobes. The flowers are bowl-shaped, white with dark veins and dots. The lobe tips are purple-spotted. The corolla is 1 to 2 centimeters long and up to 5 centimeters wide.
Brodiaea elegans is a species of flowering plant in the cluster-lily genus known by the common names harvest brodiaea, elegant brodiaea, and elegant cluster-lily. The bulb is native to the mountain ranges of California and Oregon, where it grows in woodlands and meadows. Brodiaea elegans is one of the later blooming wildflowers, often seen in May and early June. We found this on the main trail through the property in June 2018.
Erodium botrys starts from a flat rosette of highly lobed green leaves on red petioles. It bears small flowers with hairy, pointed sepals surrounding five purple-streaked lavender petals.
Claytonia perfoliata is also know as Indian Lettuce, Spring Beauty, and Winter Purslane. We have this growing all around the house. The plant first appears in sunlit areas after the first heavy rains of the year, though the best stands are found in shaded areas, especially in the uplands, into early summer. As the days get hotter and drier, the leaves turn a deep red color as they dry out. When in season we have eaten this in our salads.
Plagiobothrys nothofulvus is an annual herb growing erect 20 to 70 centimeters in maximum height. It contains purple sap, the herbage edged with purple or rusty red and bleeding purple when crushed. The leaves are mostly located in a rosette around the base of the stem, with a few alternately arranged along the stem's length. The inflorescence is a series of tiny five-lobed white flowers each 3 to 9 millimeters wide.
Solanum xanti is also known as chaparral nightshade and San Diego nightshade. It is a member of the genus Solanum and is native to the Western United States in Arizona, California, Nevada, and Oregon. The plant grows in chaparral, oak woodlands, and conifer forests. It is a perennial herb producing a branching hairy stem up to about 35 inches in maximum height. It flowers from February to June in the wild, bearing an umbel-shaped inflorescence with many purple-blue flowers. The plant is drought-tolerant and deer resistant.
Lupinus nanus is also known as Dwarf or Field Lupine and is native to the western United States. It grows on slopes or in open or disturbed areas below 4000 feet. At Foxtail Farm it is found most everywhere and starts to bloom late April continuing through May.
Turkey Mullein or Dove Weed
Croton setigerus, a dicot, is an annual herb that is native to California. The squat plant has furry, feltlike, hexagon shaped leaves, pale pink green in color. The foliage is toxic to animals. The seeds, however, are very palatable to birds. The common names of the plant come from the affinity of doves and wild turkeys for the seeds. This plant grows everywhere around the property.
Hordeum murinum is a species of grass commonly called Foxtail. This grass is common in weedy areas around roads, paths, and other disturbances. It is an annual, and is soft and green from January through March or April. We named our place Foxtail Farm since if we could grow nothing else, we could certainly grow foxtails.
Clarkia williamsonii is a species of flowering rejoin soendemic to California, where it is known from the forests and woodlands of the northern and central Sierra Nevada foothills. We found these on the upper trails areas of the property.
Woolly Mule's Ears
Wyethia mollis is a coarse perennial herb native to the mountains of northern California. We identified several specimens around the house in June 2018.
Verbascum thapsus is also known as Great Mullein is a non-native species that is a hairy biennial plant that can grow to 2 m tall or more. Its small, yellow flowers are densely grouped on a tall stem, which grows from a large rosette of leaves. It grows in a wide variety of habitats, but prefers well-lit, disturbed soils, where it can appear soon after the ground receives light, from long-lived seeds that persist in the soil seed bank. It is a common weedy plant that spreads by prolifically producing seeds, but it rarely becomes aggressively invasive, since its seeds require open ground to germinate.
It is widely used for herbal remedies, with well-established emollient and astringent properties. Mullein remedies are especially recommended for coughs and related problems, but also used in topical applications against a variety of skin problems. We a specimen near our orchard.