by Charlene Burgi
I am amazed when people say that native plants are boring and drab, offering little color to the landscape. If you look closely, you’ll see our hills are alive with color: orange from California poppies, purple from lupine and ceanothus, red from redbud, and white from native dogwoods. Pacific coast irises carpet the sides of redwood forest trails. Look around. This year’s heavy winter rains increased the production of wild flowers, shrubs and trees, so it’s a great time to observe Mother Nature’s show.
Plan on taking a hike this weekend—take advantage of the glorious weather coming our way and experience the native plant pageant. It’s free! Novato has a trail unknown to most. It is along Day Island Road in the Black Point region. There are Cistus rockrose growing wild there. They are indigenous to only one other location in the world. The rockrose blooms this time of the year and is a sight to behold. MMWD’s Mt. Tamalpais Watershed also has an abundance of trails loaded with wildflowers. I would venture to guess that right now most any trail in Marin will provide a colorful show of flowers that won’t disappoint you.
If you would like more detailed information about native plants, Greg Van Trump and I will be teaching “Go Native” at Marin Art & Garden Center next Saturday, May 1, from 9:00 a.m. to noon. This is the last of the Bay-Friendly class series, not to be repeated until July. Please click here to register. See you then.