Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Rock City Baby!

I've been wanting to head to Mount Diablo lately. With all this rain the green grass is making it look like the Emerald City off in the distance. Then we just happened to hear about "Rock City" on Mt. Diablo and thought we'd take a look.


And what a cool place it is! Hidden among the trees are beautifully rounded boulders, great for scrambling up, climbing into, and picnicking upon. And everything was covered in a lovely bright green moss. So pettable!

justin's rock

heart rock

And of course there were some great plants growing:

My favorite fern ever-Polypodium californicum. Course I can't grow it. Just have to enjoy it on hikes.

Polypodium californicum

Some nice bulb action: Dodecatheon jefferyi to the best of my knowledge.

Dodecatheon jefferyi

Dodecatheon jefferyi

And everywhere the Pedicularis densiflora. Supposedly a tea can be made from the leaves that relax tense muscles. Going to have to find some of this growing on private land, somewhere I can harvest.

Pedicularis densiflora

Definitely don't want to harvest any of this- Poison Oak: Toxicodendron diversilobum

evil cometh

And the amazing Arctostaphylos auriculata! Lovely gray foliage, smothered in pink flowers and bark to die for! I wonder if this is in cultivation anywhere?

Arctostaphylos auriculata

Arctostaphylos auriculata

arctostaphylos trunks

rctostaphylos satin

And cute little "Soap Plants" (Chlorogalum pomeridianum) popping up everywhere. This one looks variegated or just nutrient deficient? Chlorogalum pomeridianum (took me forever to learn to spell that name) is called Soap plant because the bulb of it can be lathered up and used as a soap. Also the fiberous casing around the bulb can be pulled off, tied at the top and used as a pot scrubber. How convenient!

variegated chlorogalum

And the ever-lovely Cynoglossum grande, "Hounds Tongue", a great plant for dry shade under oaks!

Cynoglossum grande

Cynoglossum grande

A lovely walk!



  1. Nice hike. But now you're going to have to go again in April when the Calochortus amabilis are blooming! :)

  2. randomtruth-thanks for the tip! I'll have to put that on my calender.

  3. One of my favorite Bay Area rock climbs is just down the trail from there, so I go there a few times every year during the summer months. The sandstone is soft and the rope scars the rock if you do the climbs when the rock is damp, so I haven't been in the spring. Very nice. Those arctos are beautiful.


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