SF Bay Area.
Bay Area 2014.
A short dayhike through the lower reaches of the Mitchell Canyon. Late April is the time to see this area at its wildflower peak ... and Mitchell Canyon is known for a few unusual things.
Stipa pulchra (purple needle grass). At the trailhead visitor's center, conveniently labeled. Use the Lightbox to see detail.
Aesculus californica (California buckeye). Heading up canyon: the buckeyes are out. This being both a nice Sunday morning and Celebrate Mt. Diablo weekend, I was hardly alone on this hike.
Delphinium sp., probably D. patens (spreading larkspur).
Collinsia heterophylla (Chinese houses).
Rupertia physodes (California tea).
Calochortus pulchellus (Mount Diablo fairy lantern). The CNPS lists this in category 1B.2 (rare, threatened, or endangered in CA and elsewhere).
Calochortus pulchellus (Mount Diablo fairy lantern). Here, these rare plants are quite common.
Papaver heterophyllum (wind poppy), with what I think is little Stipa pulchra (purple needle grass) on the side. While not officially rare, I know of only a few places where I can reliably spot these poppies.
Papaver heterophyllum (wind poppy). Look close at this zoom to see the style, the stalk coming out of the ovary, ending in the flat stigma. The related fire poppy (P. californicum) has a disk-like stigma right on the ovary.
Heracleum maximum (common cow parsnip), with what looks like some bindweed twining up its stem.