Field Journal Entry #5 Mt.Tamalpais(Ridgecrest)

Coordinates: 37°55′44.72″N122°34′40.18″W

We’d visited Mt. Tamalpais again but this time it was ridgecrest blvd. Ridgecrest blvd is a beautiful driveway up the west flank of Mount Tamalpais that shows scenery views of the Marin coast. We saw coyote brush, madrone, poison hemlock at the first stop. We made multiple short stops that we encountered many different habitats such as coastal scrub, deciduous forest, grasslands, and open chaparrals. We also saw chain ferns, wild strawberries, live oak, and bedstraw. The weather was cloudy and chilly, but we saw people were hang gliding which was really cool. We also took a class photo!

Calypso bulbosa

Calypso bulbosa also known as fairy slipper is a part of Orchidaceae family. It is native perennial plant that has a small pink, purple or pinkish-purple flower. It has parallel venation and modified set of petals. It has a single big flower. Its habit is 7-18cm. The leaves are basal, petioled, blade 3-6.5cm, elliptic to white-hairy at mouth. It is concave, column 8-11mm, wide-ovate, hood-like, arched over pouch. The fruit is erect and they mostly live in generally shaded conifer forest. The flowering time is between March to June. It mostly thrive in the elevation less than 1800m.


Iris macrosiphon

Iris macrosiphon, also known as ground iris is a native flowering plant that is from Iridaceae family. They’re monocots that has unbranched stem up to 15cm. The leaves are basal 3-6mm wide, base is generally colorless. Inflorescence is 1 or 2 flowers in parts of 3 with lowest 2 bracts opposite, enclosing perianth tube, outer 5-9cm, 9-17mm wide. The flower is lavender to deep blue-purple and generally veined darker with bowl-like at top. The sepals are about 4-7cm, 14-22mm wide. They commonly live in open to partly shaded slopes in oak or pine woodland. They usually thrive in the elevation generally less than 1000m. The flowering time is between March to May,


Oxalis pes-caprae

Oxalis pes-caprae, aka Bermuda buttercup is an invasive non-native species of tristylous flowering plant in the wood sorrel family Oxalidaceae. It is perennial herb and bulbs many on rhizomes. The stem is generally underground, vertical, and short. Its leaves are basal rosette at enlarge stem tip. The petiole is less than 12cm and leaflets are less than 3.5cm, abaxially hairy. Inflorescence is umbel-like, less than 20 flowered, peduncle less than 30cm. The flower is sepals less than 7mm, lanceolate to oblong, tips often with 2 orange tubercles. The petals are yellow and less than 2.5cm. They usually live in disturbed areas, roadsides, grassland and elevation less than 820m. The flowering time is between January to May.


We left campus around 12:50pm and arrived at our destination after 40 minutes. This field trip was little different. I thought this trip was easy compared to previous trips because we didn’t hike for too long. Instead, we made multiple stops and looked for species that live in different habitat. We saw many flowering plants and I especially thought that California poppy was the most beautiful one among Apiaceae. The weather was little chilly, cloudy, and windy. The first place was at the Homestead Fire Road where we saw Bermuda buttercups, poison hemlock, coyote brush, and yellow mats. The second place was grassy hills where we saw live oaks and leather oak. When we were taking a class photo we saw people doing hang gliding which was so cool. I thought I want to come back again for hang gliding and see the beautiful plants from the air.

Additional Photos:

Checker Mallow, part of family Malvaceae

California poppy, part of family Papaveraceae

Sanicula arctopiodes, part of Apiaceae



Field Journal Entry #4 Mt.Tamalpais

Coordinates: 37.9235° N, 122.5965° W

Mt.Tamalpais is a peak in Marin County, California, often considered symbolic of Marin County. We hiked along the Yolanda Trail near Phoenix Lake. There was a watershed, Marin municipal water district at the start of our hike and we saw the big artificial waterfall too. The trail was surrounded by the mountains with Coffeeberry, madrones, California bays, redwoods, and black oaks that were the species easy to find throughout the trail. The trail was little muddy but overall easy with some uphills.

Adiantum jordanii 

Adiantum jordanii, also known as California Maidenhair is a native perennial plants that is part of Pteridaceae family. It lives in relatively shaded hillsides and wet, moist woodland. It has leaves 20-50cm, blade 2-3 pinnate. They’re lobed often less than quarter way to base, generally with irregular lobes, margins at base converging at 90-180 degree. The dark stalk color often ending abruptly at base of ultimate segments and mid-vein forked into equal branches not along margin. Its stems are relatively thin and black.

Pedicularis densiflora

Pedicularis densiflora, also known as warrior’s plume is a native perennial plants that is part of Orobanchaceae family. The habit is soft to coarse brown hairy. The stem is around 6-55cm. Its leaves are basal 5-28cm, lance-oblong, segments 13-41cm, linear to ovate, doubly toothed to lobed. The inflorescence is 4-12cm, lower bracts larger than flowers. The flower is calyx about 8-15mm, generally hairy, corolla 23-36mm, straight, club-like, deep red to red purple. The fruit is about 8-13mm and the seed is 2.5-4.5mm, surface netted. It mostly live in dry chaparral, oak pine or yellow-pine forest. The flowering time is between March to May.

Iris macrosiphon

Iris macrosiphon, also known as ground iris, is a native perennial plant that is part of the Iridaceae family. It is a monocot, living in relatively sunny, grasslands, meadows or open woodlands. Habit is rhizome, blubs, fleshy roots. The leaves are 2-ranked in basal fan; it is reduced, often bract-like, without development of distal portion. Inflorescence is flat cyme, flowers can be 1 or more. The flower is perianth parts clawed, sepals generally wider than petals in multiples of three, spreading or reflexed, occasionally with white area in basal 3/4, this generally with smaller yellow area; petals erect; stamens free forming 3. The fruit loculicidal capsule, rounded or triangular. Seed generally compressed, pitted, light to dark brown.


We departed the parking lot around 1pm and arrived at the park around 1:45pm. It was quite a drive, and the weather was little chilly as there had been rain in the past weeks. This hike was not too difficult, except there were some big uphills. One thing I enjoyed the most was when we went up the hill to see the species Mimulus congdonii which Dr.Paul had found. It was very unique small pink flower but also it was good to look down the view up at the hill. The trail was little muddy and slippery so I was more careful when going down from the hill. We saw many familiar plants that we previously encountered such as coffeeberry, California bay, or Coastal sage brush. Overall I really enjoyed this hike and I hope I come back when the weather gets more dry and more flowers bloom.

Additional Photos

The artificial waterfall at the start of hike

The watershed at the beginning of trail

Diaplacus congdonii, Congon’s monkeyflower

Dudleya cymose, aka rock lettuce, part of family Crassulaceae

Primula hendersonii, aka shooting star