Lovely photo. Haven't seen too many poppies locally this year but could be haven't been to the right places. The local paper said it would be a good wildflower year. A long time ago now I went to the Gorman hills near the antelope valley, about 50 miles north of LA off the 5fwy. The whole hillsides were full of poppies and lupine, really amazing sight. It was midweek and hardly anybody there, as I was leaving about 2 or 3 limos appeared and out popped some very well dressed Chinese guards followed by half a dozen Buddhist monks in full saffron robes. They all went for a walk thru the poppies and the colour contrast was great. Wish I'd taken a photo but at the time I thought it would be disrespectful.
Cool thing recently learned about the ceanothus is that bees don't actually have to land to collect their pollen. Because of the hydrostatic charges between the pollen and the body of bee, all the bee has to do is fly close above the flowers and the pollen will shoot off the flower and attach to the hairs on a bees body and then the bee just has to comb thru its hair to collect the pollen. Have been watching my ceanothus flowers but haven't seen that yet even though there are loads of bees around at the moment.
bees don't actually have to land to collect their pollen.
A rare double QuickQuote! Nice stories. The poppy field shot would have been a neat one, but I appreciate your respect for their moment. The bees and ceanothus is a new one for the "Ain't Nature Swell" files.. Thanks.
Post by desertwoman on Mar 20, 2015 21:00:06 GMT -5
Just telling the story, david, has left a wonderful image in my mind's eye. Thank you!
I've been in those hills with the poppies and lupine blooming. In fact I have a very old photo of me sitting in one of those fields of poppies. I wonder if I can find it. It was probably circa 1980 or so.
Northern New Mexico Zone 6b (formerly Zone 5) Posting since 2005
being from so cal and all, I love poppys and I love orange. I grow poppies every year up here. this year, I planted some from seed from the bulk bins at the health food store. something in that planter came up already, and silly me didn't put a name stick! it's either forget-me-nots ore poppy from the bulk bins - forget me are from a packet, so...
dessert mallow sometimes referred as the desert rose?
I' had never heard that, so I checked Calflora. There are several common names: Deserthollyhock, desert globemallow, apricot mallow, and Desert Mallow. There is another plant Hibiscus coulteri which has the common name of Desert Rose Mallow/
The Family is Malvaceae, then there is Genus Sphaeralcea and Genus Hibiscus, and then assorted species names.
Pretty plant but after all of the discussion about your drought, I could not help but notice the soil. Boy that looks DRY!
I guess it does but you have to remember that soils here are very different. There never was a deciduous tree cover or grass cover for that matter so the soils tend to have much less organic matter than I'm sure your soil does. My soil is on granite and is referred to here as decomposed granite so its basically a fine grit that drains fast. On my soil report a few years back i think it stated 2% organic, and that was for soil that had been amended and worked.
The one thing I don't quite understand about the soils here is that whilst it is basically a fine decomposed granite and drains fast at the surface if you actually dig a hole and then fill with water it will take quite a while to drain away. I think there are some clays that have migrated down from the granite that make the soil drain slower when you dig a hole. It can make for good soil, my garden soil now looks lovely, fluffy and according to the report is full of good stuff but I still struggle to get the sort of plant growth that i was used to in england, but then again growth is year round here and not concentrated into the spring summer so maybe thats the difference. I need to do a lot more reading on soils for this part of the world thats for sure.
Most of these california native stuff actually prefers this type of soil and so I'm trying to integrate as much as possible and there are some lovely plants. The one thing that puzzled me was that I'm always told with them don't water in summer or else they have the tendency to rot away. The strange thing is that many of these california plants are fairly common garden plants in the UK as they are that sought after and they look lovely and it sure does rain there in summer. I was told that the reason they die here is that fungi in the soil can attack the roots in summer as the warmer temps allow them to flourish if there's sufficient water around. The thing is in Uk those fungi don't exist so you can water as much as you want and they won't die, in actual fact they look better there than here sort of a perpetual spring for them. Strange but true gardening tales.