After a slow first five months, I'm back to blogging in earnest. In the forthcoming few months I plan to keep on tracking the blooming of wildflowers, the activities of bugs and reptiles and any other critters I'm quick enough or lucky enough to photograph, and to comment on ecological relationships. Since there is an increasing sense of ecological crisis among many people and more vigorous denial of such on the part of others, I will inevitably comment on the social and political dimensions of survival as I see them.
I am still an adjunct instructor in the English Department at Feather River College, but time permitting, I am available for hire as a nature guide in the region in and around Plumas County. A brochure describing my usual kinds of natural history adventures is in development. Email me c/o email@example.com with your mailing address and a statement of interests, and I'll send you a rough draft.
I have been teaching since 1965 and have recently joined the English Department as an Associate Faculty member at Feather River College. Recently taught Nature Literature in America and am currently teaching Interpersonal Communication and Basic Reading and Writing.
This is the second set of photos from my recent exploration of the area between the North end of Oakland Camp and the mouth of Gilson Creek, about 3/4 mile to the West. More and more species of wildflowers are coming into bloom and the insect and spider visitors are arriving soon afterwards. First on today's list (above) is the Douglas's Spiraea which graces the banks of Spanish Creek through camp and beyond. This happens to be a very hardy bush which many locals, including me, have incorporated into their landscaping. Actually, at home I've planted the Mountain Spiraea, but both species are hardy and bloom for a long time.
My favorite Milkweed, the Showy Milkweed, Asclepias speciosa, is beginning to bloom all around Quincy and is already attracting beetles, bees, and butterflies, but I have yet to see my favorite, the Red Milkweed Beetle, Tetraopes basalis.
We have two local species of Pennyroyal and I believe this one is the Mountain Pennyroyal (below).
One of our many local members of the mint family, Lamiaceae, is the Self-heal. It doesn't have much of a fragrance, but has the square stem and characteristic blossoms.
St. John's Wort is abundant on many Quincy area roadsides and definitely near all three tributaries of Spanish Creek in the Oakland Camp area. We also have the closely related Klamath Weed, but I haven't seen that one blooming yet this season. Will discuss the distinction when both are blooming.
This Crimson Columbine was blooming under the huge White Alders that shade the mouth of Gilson Creek. They are also blooming around Tollgate Creek and Berry Creek.