Saturday, May 27, 2017

Drought Stress Affects More Species

During a visit today I noticed the effects of the current drought.
Months of high temperatures, lack of rainfall and moisture-sucking winds have taken  their toll.
None of this year's crop of Scrub Lupine seedlings appear to have survived. Only a handful were still alive when I checked earlier this month.
However, the effect is visible in established adult plants of other species.
Today I observed brown foliage on Bonamia grandiflora,  Persea humilis and Polygonella myriophylla.
In addition I saw only a handful of butterflies, which is unusual for this time of year.
The plants will certainly survive, just as they did in previous droughts, I suppose.
The last serious dry spell to hit the area was in the 1998-2000 period, which is before this was state property. so I don't know what happened.
When I first visited the site in 2002, everything appeared healthy, thanks to the resumption of normal rainfall.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Drought takes toll on lupines

The hot, windy and mostly rainless spring this year has taken a toll on what looked like a promising batch of Scrub Lupine seedlings that emerged earlier this year.
Everyone expects mortality because of a combination of the hostile spring weather and the fragility of this plant, but this year was particularly harsh.
Out of more than 100 seedlings, if I remember the count correctly, only a handful have survived so far and I don't expect much rain for another month or two.
Another setback.