Botany Outing Report: May 2019

On May 6th at Kin Beach Park, six of us including Helen, spent a couple of hours uprooting more of the invasive Lamium galeobdolon (yellow archangel) as well as equally aggressive Aegopodium podagraria (goutweed) under the watchful eye of the archangel goddess, still perched in the bush above. Lunch was somewhat disturbed by the Snowbirds in practice before they were due to leave the Valley.  I had thought they were already gone!!  Then Helen took some of the group around the Park, to identify the spring flowers still in bloom, including Lomatium nudicaule (Indian consumption plant/barestem desert- parsley) and Delphinium menziesii (Menzies larkspur).

On May 13th eight of us meandered from Salmon Point through the gravel flats to Woodhus slough, with John B. in the lead, noting most of the late spring flowers in bloom.  Near the start of the trail Betty pointed out the remnants of a huge bank of Delphinium menziesii (Menzies larkspur) – much of it had been levelled in the development of a residential property. The plants were just coming into bloom – photo 1.  And amongst them and spreading along the trail towards the slough was Valerianella locusta – commonly known as corn salad, a garden escapee that seeds itself vigorously – photo 2, from my garden. John pointed out where later in the summer we should be able to see a large array of  Spiranthes romanzoffiana (ladies tresses).  Outstanding were the numbers of Lomatium nudicaule (Indian consumption plant/barestem desert parsley) all the way to the Slough and beyond. Close in the gravel flats the plants were mixed in with a pink sea of Plectritis congesta (seablush)- photo 3.  Other flowers of note included Eriophyllum lanatum (woolly sunflower/Oregon sunshine), Lathyrus japonica (beach pea), Toxicoscordion venenosum ( death camas), Rosa nutkana (Nootka rose) and Lonicera hispidula (hairy honeysuckle) – photo 4.

We then drove on to the Oyster Bay Shoreline Protection Park, primarily to see the red-listed Balsamorhiza deltoidea (deltoid balsamroot) in bloom.  The largest clump, somewhat protected from view by the low spreading branches of a Douglas fir, is flourishing happily – photo 5.  Unfortunately, one of the plants out in the open had been dug up, while the blooms had been cut from another.   We should have a sign made to inform the public that these plants are rare and should be left untouched.  When the OB Shoreline Protection Society came to an end, CVN did receive a portion of its remaining funds, so we as a group could ask the executive for funds towards a sign and approach the SRD with a proposal to place a sign in the park.

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