Natives in Bloom

A couple of weeks ago, I finally had the chance to visit Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden (which happens to be in Claremont, not Santa Ana as you might think) — a botanic garden dedicated to native California plants. Such good timing, as everything is starting to bloom and looks gorgeous, thanks to the relatively wet winter we’ve had. I’m a California native myself and I think that may be why I am so drawn to the combination of orange and blue, like the poppies and ceanothus that go so well together and burst into bloom in tandem as the days start growing longer.

Wildflower season in Southern California “officially” starts on March 5, according to Theodore Payne Foundation. Now is the time to get out there and see all the spectacle for yourself. TPF has a “wildflower hotline” page on its website to let you know where to go. Sadly, the season doesn’t last long. The temps will be pushing 100 again, and fire season will replace mud-slide season before you can sneeze from that extra bit of pollen in the cool, fresh spring air.

Here are some photos to entice you:

Dendromecon (Bush Poppy)

Dendromecon (Bush Poppy)

Salvia spathacea

Mimulus 'Trish'

Eschscholzia californica (California Poppy)

Cluster of poppies

Ceanothus spp.

A white Ceanothus

Trichostema lanatum (Woolly Blue Curls)

Heuchera (Coral Bells)

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