08 Apr Locals Only: A Surprising Tour of Southern California’s Native Plants
Last weekend we headed up the coast in search of indigenous plants, and were amazed by the colorful diversity we found. The low-lying chaparral we expected was punctuated by shocking, shoulder-high clouds of wild lilac (Ceanothus) and flannel bush blooming yellow, and one of the most stunning flowering euphorbias we’ve ever seen. It was at least 10 feet tall!
How sweet is to find so many species called californica. These discoveries happened courtesy of the “Blooming Consciousness” tour, presented by Garden Native and the California Native Plant Society. You might remember our preview; this year’s two-day tour featured fifteen locations all over North County San Diego — from Vista and San Marcos to Carlsbad and Solana Beach. The plants on view are native to California and Baja.
We explored three gardens: (1) Lux Art Institute, where bees wrestle with salvia and bladderpod shrubs planted along an uphill path. The trail leads to a gallery filled with rotating works created by artists-in-residence from around the world. (2) A private house in Encinitas with the abovementioned euphorbia at the entrance, plus mini meadows thick with native plants like California poppies, yucca and punchbowl clarkias, and one seriously cool repurposed art/water feature in the backyard. And (3) a Solana Beach home with out-of-this-world succulents and an inventive quiz about natives versus invasives.
(We did just so-so on that quiz.)
Below, we wander. Come on with!