I told myself that I needed to avoid photographs of California and its flora for at least a week or so, since I’ve been fairly California-centric lately – but one more won’t hurt before I start that.
California is the centre of diversity for the genus Arctostaphylos (the manzanitas or bearberries). Pajaro manzanita, unfortunately, is one of the endangered species. It is present in only two counties, Monterey and San Benito; a small population in Santa Cruz County was lost to residential development. It has been given 1B.1 Status by the California Native Plant Society, meaning it is “rare, threatened, or endangered in California and elsewhere” (1B) and seriously endangered in California (0.1). Despite that designation, it has no formal listing in either state or federal endangered species lists. This factsheet on Arctostaphylos pajaroensis from the Elkhorn Slough Coastal Training Program details the threats to the populations in Monterey County: again, residential development and associated fire suppression.
As always for Californian native plants, the Jepson Manual provides a detailed description of the taxon: Arctostaphylos pajaroensis.
Photography resource link: for inspiration, the photography of Patricia Brundage from Connecticut. Unfortunately, many of the images are on the small side.