{tab=Trip Recap}

This might have been our best trip of the year. A small group of ten CNPS members were overwhelmed by the natural beauty and the outstanding conservation work being dore at Starr Ranch.

Our hosts for the day were the magnificent team of Sandy and Pete DeSimone. We met near the ranch headquarters, where Sandy and Pete welcomed us and gave an overview of the property, its history and some of its current projects. We then took a few minutes to go into one of the classrooms, where Pete showed us the live "owl-cam" and discussed to barn owls and a few other birds that have become a highlight in recent years at the ranch.

But the best was yet to come. We boarded into the back of a rugged GMC truck and Pete drove us all over the property, down canyons, up hillsides, through grasslands and across creeks. Meanwhile, Sandy educated us about the myriad of restoration efforts that are going on at the ranch, especially the excellent efforts to remove and manage invasive plants on the 4,000 acre property. Many of the invasive plant techniques employed at Starr Ranch have been pioneering and the results were obvious, especially when Sandy would show a photo from several years earlier. During one of the many stops, we would be amazed by the diverse plants and the thriving ecosystems; then Sandy would show a photo from a decade earlier - when the area was choked with wild artichoke or other exotic plants and barely functioning. The improvement was dramatic and clearly visible to all of us, as well as the birds, mammals, insects and other inhabitants of the land.

Even though 2013 is an especially dry year, we still enjoyed the plants. During our wanderings on the slopes of Preusker's Peak we located Madia elegans (one of only two or three occurances in OC). We also searched the location of OC's endemic Allen's Daisy (Pentachaeta aurea ssp. allenii), but it was too dry this year. Calochortus (Mariposa Lilies) are always fun and we saw many Calochortus splendens and even a few C. catalinae. 108 species were casually identified during the visit, including Ericameria pinifolia (Pine Goldenbush), Cirsium occidentale (Cobweb Thistle), Lomatium dasycarpum ssp. dasycarpum (Woolly-fruited Lomatium) and Salix exigua (Narrow-leaved Willow). For a complete list of trip species, see the next tab - "Plants Seen".

Thanks you Sandy and Pete for all the great work you are doing and for sharing the ranch with us today!

{tab=Plants Seen}

Acmispon glaber - Deerweed 

Acmispon heermannii - Woolly Lotus

Ageratina adenophora* - Sticky Eupatorium

Alnus rhombifolia - White Alder

Ambrosia psilostachya var. californica - Ragweed 

Amsinckia menziesii var. intermedia - Common Fiddleneck

Anagallis arvensis* - Scarlet Pimpernel

Artemesia californica - California Sagebrush

Artemesia douglasiana - California Mugwort

Asclepias eriocarpa - Indian Milkweed

Avena barbata* - Slender Wild Oat

Avena fatua* - Wild Oat

Baccharis pilularis - Coyote Brush

Baccharis salicifolia  - Mule Fat

Bebbia juncea - Scabrid Sweetbush

Bloomeria crocea - Golden Stars

Bothriochloa barbinodis* - Plumed Beardgrass

Brachypodium distachyon* - Purple False Brome

Brassica nigra* - Black Mustard

Bromus diandrus* - Ripgut Grass

Bromus madritensis ssp. rubens* - Foxtail Chess

Calochortus catalinae - Catalina Mariposa Lily

Calochortus splendens - Splendid Mariposa Lily

Calystegia macrostegia ssp. cyclostegia - Purple-bracted Morning-glory

Carduus pycnocephalus* - Italian Thistle

Castilleja affinis ssp. affinis - Coast Paintbrush

Chlorogalum parviflorum - Soap Lily

Cirsium occidentale - Cobweb Thistle

Clarkia purpurea - Four-spot 

Corethrogyne filaginfolia var. latifolia - Tomentose Cudweed Aster

Cryptantha sp. - Popcorn Flower

Cuscuta californica - California Witch's Hair

Cynara cardunculus* - Cardoon 

Deinandra fasciculata - Fascicled Tarweed

Dichelostemma capitatum - Wild Hyacinth

Dudleya pulverulenta - Chalk Live-Forever

Ericameria pinifolia - Pine Goldenbush

Eriogonum fasciculatum ssp. fasciculatum - California Buckwheat

Erodium sp.* - Storksbill 

Filago californica  - Fluffweed 

Galium angustifolium ssp. angustifolium - Chaparral Bedstraw

Galium nuttallii ssp. nuttallii - Nuttall's Bedstraw

Grindelia robusta var. bracteosa - Gum Plant

Gutierrezia californica - California Matchweed

Hesperoyucca whipplei - Our Lord's Candle

Heteromeles arbutifolia - Toyon 

Heterotheca grandiflora - Telegraph Weed

Hirschfeldia incana* - Shortpod Mustard

Holocarpha virgata ssp. elongata - Sticky Tarweed

Hypochoeris glabra* - False Dandelion

Isocoma menziesii - Coast Goldenbush

Keckiella cordifolia - Heart-leaved Bush Penstemon

Lactuca serriola* - Prickly Lettuce

Lamarckia aurea* - Goldentop 

Lepidospartum squamatum - Scale-broom 

Lolium multiflorum* - Italian Rye

Lomatium dasycarpum ssp. dasycarpum - Woolly-fruited Lomatium

Lupinus albifrons var. albifrons - Silver Lupine

Lupinus bicolor - Miniature Lupine

Madia elegans ssp. elegans - Common Madia

Malosma laurina  - Laurel Sumac

Malva parviflora* - Cheeseweed 

Marah macrocarpus - Big Root

Marrubium vulgare* - Common Horehound

Medicago polymorpha* - Bur Clover

Melica imperfecta - Melic Grass

Mimulus aurantiacus - Northern Monkey Flower

Mimulus guttatus - Seep-spring Monkey Flower

Muhlenbergia rigens - California Deergrass

Nasella pulchra - Purple Needlegrass

Nasturtium officinale - Watercress 

Nicotiana glauca* - Tree Tobacco

Oenothera elata ssp. hirsutissima - Marsh Evening Primrose

Opuntia littoralis var. littoralis - Prickly Pear

Osmadenia tenella - Southern Rosinweed

Osmorhiza brachypoda - Sweet Cicely

Phacelia cicutaria - Caterpillar Phacelia

Phalaris aquatica* - Harding Grass

Phoradendron macrophyllum - Big Leaf Mistletoe

Plantago lanceolata* - English Plantain

Platanus racemosa - California Sycamore

Pseudognaphalium californicum - California Everlasting

Pseudognaphalium microcephalum - White Everlasting

Quercus agrifolia var. agrifolia - Coast Live Oak

Quercus beberidifolia - California Scrub Oak

Rhamnus californica ssp. californica - California Coffeeberry

Rhamnus crocea - Spiny Redberry

Rhamnus ilicifolia - Holly-leaf Redberry

Rhus integrifolia - Lemonade Berry

Rumex crispus* - Curly Dock

Salix exigua - Narrow-leaved Willow

Salix lasiolepis var. lasiolepis - Arroyo Willow

Salvia apiana - White Sage

Salvia mellifera - Black Sage

Sambucus mexicana - Mexican Elderberry

Sidalcea malvaeflora ssp. sparsifolia - Checker-bloom 

Sisyrinchium bellum - Blue-eyed Grass

Solidago californica - California Goldenrod

Sonchus asper* - Prickly Sow-thistle

Stipa coronatum - Giant Needlegrass

Thalictrum polycarpum - Meadow Rue

Toxicodendron diversilobum - Poison Oak

Typha angustifolia - Narrow-leaved Cat-tail

Uropappus lindleyi* - Silver Puffs

Verbena lasiostachys - Western Verbena

Vicia benghalensis* - Purple Vetch 

Viola pedunculata - Johnny Jump-up

Vitis girdiana - Wild Grape


* Not native