Posts Tagged ‘poppy’

14,380

April 19, 2012

The intrepid Portal adventurers counted 14,380 individual plants on 382 sampling quadrats (0.25 m2 each), while also trapping >150 rodents, in only 4 days (March 12-15)!┬áIt was a whirlwind trip, but we had a lot of fun and learned a lot about plants! The numbers show Astragalus nuttalianus (Nuttall’s milk vetch, a very small plant) and Erodium cicutarium (Stork’s Bill, a dominant, spreading rosette) to be the most common annuals by far, followed by Lesquerella gordoni (Gordon’s Bladderpod, with pretty yellow flowers), Chaenactis steviodes (Esteve’s pincushion, a fleshy plant with white flowers), and Descurainia pinnata (western tansy mustard, a leggy, inconspicuous mustard).

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Poppies, poppies, poppies!

March 20, 2012

Our trip to Portal last week was filled with poppies! So much so, that I decided they deserved their own blog post. This may not be the best year for wildflowers in southern Arizona, but it’s a dramatic change from the past few years which were much drier with very little vegetation at all. Rainfall this past year has been pretty patchy across the state, but our site received adequate and continuous enough rain through the winter to produce fields of poppies (Escholtzia mexicana). We were probably lucky enough to arrive during the peak for poppies, and the San Simon valley was surrounded by orange-hillsides. I’m not sure how anyone could walk in these fields and not be possessed with an inexplicable happiness and an urge run around in the flowers!

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