The ever-changing nature of gardens is most strongly evident in the Alpine Garden at UBC; what one sees as particularly showy in one year may not be repeated in the next. I don’t recall this Californian tree poppy catching my attention previously, but I was quite enamoured of it when encountering it on Friday.
Native to the Sierra Nevada and coastal ranges of California and Baja California, Dendromecon rigida is a woody shrub that typically grows in post-burn chapparal. Germination of its seeds requires a smoke treatment, but unlike many of the annuals that also establish on sites after a fire, tree poppy also requires its seeds to have been stored in the soil for an extended period (see: Keeley, JE and CJ Fotheringham. 1998. Smoke-induced seed germination in California chapparal. Ecology. 79(7): 2320-2336).
Three more days until a small announcement!
Botany / conservation resource link: Discover the efforts of Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew in understanding and conserving the Flora of Madagascar. One of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, the flora (and fauna) of Madagascar is under heavy threat of extinction from deforestation.