{tab=Trip Recap}

GREAT trip! Today we had an all-star team of native plant experts; CNPS members, friends and other plant lovers who seemed to really enjoy the visit. The group included Bob Allen, principal author of Wildflowers of Orange County and The Santa Ana Mountains, Karin Klein, author of 50 Hikes in Orange County, expert animal tracker and naturalist Dick Newell, CNPS chapter board members Celia Kutcher, Dori Ito, and Rachel Whitt, CNPS website manager Rich Schilk and his wife Mary, all around expert Diane Etchison and many more. A total of 28 enthusiasts.

After driving up beautiful Hwy. 74, we began the trip toward the base of Elsinore Peak, along the edges of South Main Divide Road. There, we had excellent views of chocolate lilies (Fritillaria), California buttercups, meadow rue, baby blue eyes, a rare Fremont's death camas and others. A short hike to "Onion Hill" (named by local botanists) revealed the rare Allium lacunosum, plus more interesting flowers like goldfields, comb bur, wooly-fruited lomatium, long-spined spineflower, purple sanicle and other specialties, especially those plants that prefer the local clay soils.

Then we re-traced our path and drove back North up Main Divide Road and stopped at the Morgan Trailhead. Approximately 1,400 acres in this area burned in early August of last year (2013). The re-growth of annual wildflowers is really substantial. Since our rainfall this past winter has been so little, in general, there are very few annuals to be found by wildflower hunters. But not here. All in the group were amazed at how many annuals and other flowers were in full display. We walked a small area of the burn and were thilled to find a dense myriad of colorful fire-followers, including five species of bluebells (Phacelia), soft yellow whispering bells, Indian tobacco, blooming chia, fiddleneck, tall Coulter's snapdragons, brilliant redmaids, golden suncups, elusive jewel flowers, three Cryptantha species and three Plagiobothrys species and a small patch of small-flowered stickleaf (Mentzelia).

Perhaps the highlight of the day for many was a small stand of fire poppies (Papaver californicum) just beginning to bloom. The large, beautiful brilliant orange flowers of these poppies were absolutely stunning. Lots of photographs.

Following the visit, several attendees stopped for sandwiches and fun conversation at the famous Candy Store just a little ways down the highway. 139 species of plants. What a day, what a great group of people.

{tab=Plants Seen}

Elsinore Peak & South Main Divide Road, Santa Ana Mts., 3/23/14

Acmispon glaber / Deer weed
Acmispon strigosus / Strigose Lotus
Acourtia microcephala / Sacapellote
Adenostema fasciculatum var fasciculatum / Chamise
Agoseris grandiflora / Large-flowered Mt Dandelion
Allium haematochiton / Red-skinned Onion
Allium lacunosium var lacunosum / Pitted Onion
Amsinckia munziesii / Small-flowered Fiddleneck
Anagalus arvensis* / Scarlet Pimpernel
Antirrhinum coulterianum / Coulter's Snapdragon
Archtostaphylos glandulosa ssp glandulosa / Eastwood Manzanita
Archtostaphylos glauca / Bigberry Manzanita
Artemisia californica  / California Sagebrush
Avena barbata* / Slender Oats
Avena fatua* / Wild Oats
Brassica nigra* / Black Mustard
Bromus diandrus* / Ripgut Brome
Bromus hordeaceus* / Soft Chess
Calandrinia ciliata / Red Maids
Calyptridium monandrum / Common Pussypaws
Calystegia macrostegia / Morning Glory
Camissoniopsis hirtella / Hairy Suncups
Caulanthus heterophyllus var pseudosimulans / San Diego Jewel Flower
Ceanothus crassifolius / Thick-leaved Lilac
Centaurea melitensis* / Tocolote
Cercocarpus betuloides var betuloides / Mountain Mahogany
Chaenactis artemisifolia / White Pincushion
Chaenactis glabriuscula var glabruiscula / Yellow Pincushion
Chorizanthe fimbriata / Fringed Spineflower
Chorizanthe polygonooides / Long-spined Spineflower
Cirsium occidentale / Cobweb Thistle
Clarkia purpurea ssp purpurea / Winecup Clarkia
Claytonia parviflora ssp parviflora / Narrow-leaf Miner's Lettuce
Claytonia perfoliata ssp perfoliata / Common Miner's Lettuce
Collinsia heterophylla var heterophylla / Purple Chinese Houses
Cordylanthus rigidus ssp setigerus / Dark-tipped Bird's Beak
Corethriogyne filaginifolia / Sand Aster
Crassula connata / Pigmy Stonecrop
Crypantha intermedia / Common Cryptantha
Cryptantha microstachys / Tejon Cryptantha
Cryptantha muricata / Prickly Cryptantha
Cupressus forbesii / Tecate Cypress
Cuscuta californica / Dodder [Witch's Hair]
Delphinium parryi ssp parryi / Parry's Larkspur
Dichelostemma capitatum ssp. Capitatum / Wild Hyacinth [Blue Dicks]
Dudleya lanceolata / Lance-leaf Dudleya
Elymus condensatus / Giant Rye Grass
Emmenanthe penduliflora var penduliflora / Whispering Bells
Eriogonum fasciculatum / California Wild Buckwheat
Eriophyllum confertiflorum var. confertiflorum / Golden Yarrow
Erodium brachycarpum* / Short-fruited Filaree
Erodium circutarium* / Red-stemmed Filaree
Erodium moschatum* / White-stemmed Filaree
Eschscholzia californica / California Poppy
Eucrypta chrysanthemifolia / Common Eucrypta
Eulobus californicus / California Suncup
Fritillaria biflora var biflora / Chocolate Lily
Galium angustifolium ssp angustofolium / Chaparral Bedstaw
Gilia angelensis / Chaparral Gilia
Hazardia squarrosa var squarrosa / Saw-tooth Goldenbush
Helianthemum scoparium / California Rush Rose
Helianthus gracilentus / Slender Sunflower
Hesperoyucca whipplei / Chaparral Yucca
Hypochaeris glabra* / Smooth Cat's Ear
Lactuca serriola* / Prickly Wild Lettuce
Lasthena gracilis / Slender Goldfields
Lathyrus vestitutus var laetiflorus / Pacific Pea
Lepidium nitidium / Shining Peppergrass
Logfia gallica / Narrow-leaf Fluffweed
Lomatium dasycarpum ssp dasycarpum / Woolly-fruited Lomatium
Lomatium utriculatum / Common Lomatium
Lonicera subspicata var denudata / Southern Honeysuckle
Lotus strigosus / Strigose Lotus
Lupinus bicolor / Miniature Lupine
Lupinus conccinnus / Bajada Lupine
Lupinus excubitus var hallii / Grape Soda [Guard] Lupine
Lupinus hirsutissiumus / Stinging Lupine
Malacothamnus fasciculatus / Bush Mallow
Malosma laurina / Laurel Sumac
Marah macrocarpus var. macrocarpus / Wild Cucumber
Medicago polymorpha* / Bur Clover
Melica imperfecta / Small-flowered Melic Grass
Mentzelia micrantha / Small-flowered Stickleaf
Micropus californicus / Slender Cottontop
Microserus [Stebbinsoseris] heterocarpa / Grassland Silverpuffs
Microserus [Uropappus]lindleyi / Silver Puffs
Mirabilis laevis var crassifolia / Wishbone Bush
Mimulus auranticus   / Bush Monkeyflower
Nemophila menziesii / Baby Blue-eyes
Oxalis albicans / Wild Oxalis
Paeonia californica / California Peony
Papaver california / Fire Poppy
Pectocarya linearis ssp ferocula / Comb Bur
Peritoma arborea var arborea / Bladderpod
Phacelia brachyloba / Short-lobed Phacelia
Phacelia circutaria var hispida / Caterpillar Phacelia
Phacelia distans / Distant Phacelia
Phacelia minor / Canterbury Bells
Phacelia parryi / Parry's Phacelia
Phoradendron leucocarpum ssp tomentosa / Oak Mistletoe
Plagiobothrys collinus / California Popcorn Flower
Plagiobothrys nothofulvus / Rusty Popcorn Flower
Plagiobothrys tennellus / Pacific Popcorn Flower
Plantago erecta / California Dwarf Plantain
Platanus racemosa  / Western Sycamore
Poa secunda* / Alkali Bluegrass
Quercus agrifolia  / Coast Live Oak
Quercus berberidifolia  / Scrub Oak
Ranunculus californicus ssp californicus / California Buttercup
Rhus ovata / Sugar Bush
Rhus [trilobata] aromatica / Basket [Skunk] Bush
Salix lasiolepis / Arroyo Willow
Saltugilia australis / Woodland Gilia
Salvia apiana / White Sage
Salvia columbariae / Chia
Salvia mellifera  / Black Sage
Sambucus mexicanus / Mexican Elderberry
Sanicula bipinnifitada / Purple Sanicle
Sanicula crassicaulis / Pacific Sanicle
Schismus barbatus* / Mediterranean Schismus
Senecio vulgaris* / Common Groundsel
Scrophularia californica ssp floribunda / California Bee Plant [Figwort]
Selaginella bigeovii / Bushy Spike Moss
Sidelacea malviflora ssp malviflora / Common Checkerbloom
Silibum marianum* / Milk Thistle
Sisyrinchium bellum / Blue-eyed Grass
Solanum parishii complex / Chaparral Nightshade
Stipa coronata / Porcupine Grass
Stipa pulchra / Purple Needlegrass
Tetropteron [Camissonia] graciliflorum  / Hill Suncup
Thalictrum fendleri / Meadowrue
Thysanocarpus laciniatus / Southern Fringepod [Lacepod]
Toxicodendron diversilobum / Poison Oak
Toxicoscordion [Zygadenus] fremontii / Fremont's Death Camas
Trifolium hirtum / Pink Clover
Uropappus lindleyi / Silver Puffs
Vicia benghalensis* / Purple Vetch
Viola pedunculata ssp pedunculata / Johnny Jump-Ups