Lab 05: Marin Fieldtrip!

Allyson Luber

September 30th, 2019

Marin, CA (Mt. Tamalpais State Park), September 24th, 2019

Goal/objective: Observe more populations of Mimulus guttatus in varied habitats around Mt. Tamalpais state park

First stop: Roadside along Highway 1! Beautiful Malibu/SoCal-like views overlooking blue waters and if you’re lucky you’ll catch Marin residents driving their super cars (and you might see some whales in the water)

On the roadside stop of Highway 1 there is natural (safe-to-drink) spring water sourced from Mt. Tam

Next to the spring water spouts is our friends– mimulus guttatus! These flowering mimuli love to get their feet wet and so they all stick around near the water spout. We discussed techniques of how bees pollinate these specific individuals since they’re planted right beside a mountain. Bees would probably fly upwards to find other flowers and plants. Along with mimuli, other water-loving plants surrounded the spring water spouts in a co-habitat, college roommates-living style. These other plants included watercress and horsetails, and we spotted fennel on the other side of the road where there’s dry soil (along the seacoast)

Fresh mint, another one of the plants living in the same habitat as mimulus guttatus in the creek area

Stop #2: Went to lower elevation where the creeks are to find mimuli in different habitats. This habitat was much more shady, cooler temperature, and much more plant/tree life surrounding us

This was one of the populations we spotted of mimuli that was in the creekside area. These mimuli are also dependent on rainfall in terms of flowering timing. For example, a sync population won’t flower because it would be too late in the year and rainfall will soon come. Rainfall is important in the sense that it determines the next generation, not just for mimuli but many of the other plants in this biome. Especially these days with higher variable climate, if there’s a drought year it will potentially take a longer time to flower.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *