What a great couple of weeks! Plants, geology and climate are so intimately intertwined. It is almost useless to have any significant discussion about the native plant components within a region without also including a conversation about the elements of their roots and their tops: the soil, exposure, rainfall, nutrients, pollinators and more. During two consecutive information-filled Sundays, Bill Neill helped CNPS members and their guests understand a bit more about what surrounds the roots of our native plants.
The geologic lessons during the two days included a dose of information from local textbooks, geologic maps, photographs, hand-drawn diagrams and especially Bill's own research and observations. Bill, a former professional geologist, began the instruction at the world level, discussing tectonic plates and the formation of the continents. From their, he narrowed the conversation to Western North American and the adjacent seas and finally to the local geology and soils of Orange County.
We visited several sites. both inland and coastal, where we could see and discuss firsthand examples of many geologic principles. Stops included a portion of Red Rocks near Black Star Canyon, Silverado Canyon, Reef Point at Crystal Cove State Park, Emerald Bay in Laguna Beach and the Dana Point Headlands.
Our chapter thanks Bill for his extreme effort, time, patience and thoroughness in putting together this excellent program. It is people like Bill Neill and their selfless sharing that make CNPS the great and effective organization that it is. For those who don't know Bill, he is also one of Southern California's most active invasive plant removal experts, who works tirelessly to eradicate tamarisk, arundo and a host of other non-native plants from sensitive natural environments.
Since this was essentially a geology program, no plant list was maintained.