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CNHG Introduction to California Mountain Wildflowers

CNHG Introduction to California Mountain Wildflowers

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Many landscapes in California's mountains are still relatively untouched by human activity and provide excellent opportunities for viewing wildflowers. This guidebook describes and illustrates the wildflowers that grow from the yellow pine belt up into the natural rock gardens that grow above timberline. First published in 1963, this convenient book has introduced thousands to California's mountain wildflowers. Now fully updated and revised, it reflects the many advances in botany that have occurred in the past forty years.

* 257 species are described and illustrated by a new color photograph, a precise line drawing, or both

* Covers all of California's mountain ranges—from the Klamath Mountains and Cascade Range to the north, through the Coast Ranges and the Sierra Nevada, to the peninsular ranges and San Bernardino mountains in southern California—as well as most of the mountain ranges in between

* This new edition includes more plants, gives helpful hints for identifying species, and incorporates new taxonomic and distribution information
Many landscapes in California's mountains are still relatively untouched by human activity and provide excellent opportunities for viewing wildflowers. This guidebook describes and illustrates the wildflowers that grow from the yellow pine belt up into the natural rock gardens that grow above timberline. First published in 1963, this convenient book has introduced thousands to California's mountain wildflowers. Now fully updated and revised, it reflects the many advances in botany that have occurred in the past forty years.

* 257 species are described and illustrated by a new color photograph, a precise line drawing, or both

* Covers all of California's mountain ranges—from the Klamath Mountains and Cascade Range to the north, through the Coast Ranges and the Sierra Nevada, to the peninsular ranges and San Bernardino mountains in southern California—as well as most of the mountain ranges in between

* This new edition includes more plants, gives helpful hints for identifying species, and incorporates new taxonomic and distribution information

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Published by: University of California Press on Dec 03, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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11/04/2011

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© by the Regents of the University of California.Not to be reproduced without publisher’s written permission.
 
INTRODUCTION
 
Panamint Range,because for the most part the wildflowerseeker does not travel in the desert in summer.
 The California Mountains
In general,the mountains ofCalifornia consist oftwo greatseries ofranges:an outer,the Coast Ranges;and an inner,theSierra Nevada and the southern end ofthe Cascade Range,in-cluding Lassen Peak and Mount Shasta.The Sierra Nevada,animmense granitic block 400 miles long and 50 to 80 mileswide,extends from Plumas County to Kern County.It is no-table for its display ofcirques,moraines,lakes,and glacial val-leys and has its highest point at Mount Whitney at 14,495 feetabove sea level.The Cascade Range,on the other hand,is vol-canic,with many extinct volcanoes,the highest in Californiabeing Mount Shasta at 14,161 feet.The California CoastRanges are bounded on the north by the Klamath Mountains,ofwhich the Siskiyou Mountains are the best known.TheCoast Ranges—several more or less parallel series ofouterand inner ranges with intervening valleys—are divided intothose north and south ofthe San Francisco Bay Area,theNorth Coast Ranges and the South Coast Ranges,respec-tively.To the south are the Transverse Ranges,where a pinebelt extends primarily into the San Gabriel and SanBernardino Mountains,the latter with the highest point insouthern California,namely,San Gorgonio Mountain (alsocalled Grayback Mountain) at 11,485 feet.Then,oriented in amore north-south direction,are the Peninsular Ranges (in-cluding Santa Ana Peak,San Jacinto Peak,Santa Rosa Moun-tain,Palomar Mountain,Cuyamaca Peak,and Laguna Peak),with San Jacinto Peak the highest at 10,800 feet.For the most part,the pine belt receives considerable pre-cipitation,usually more than 25 inches per year,and a largeproportion ofit is in the form ofsnow.In the Sierra Nevada,the snowfall may be tremendous—as much as 450 inches per
INTRODUCTION
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This book is an attempt to present to general readers nottrained in taxonomic botany,but interested in nature andtheir surroundings,some ofthe wildflowers ofthe Californiamountains in such a way that they can be identified withouttechnical knowledge.Naturally,these are mostly summerwildflowers,together with a few ofthe more striking speciesthat bloom in spring and fall.They are roughly those from the yellow pine belt upward through the red fir and subalpineforests to the peaks above timberline.Obviously,the 286plants presented cannot begin to cover all that occur in sogreat an altitudinal range,especially when the geographicallimits ofthe pine belt are considered.Mention ofthe pine belt in California mountains will nat-urally cause you to think ofthe Sierra Nevada,but ofcoursethis belt also extends into the southern Cascade Range (MountShasta and Lassen Peak in California) and the Siskiyou Moun-tains in the northwestern part ofthe state.As you move south-ward in the North Coast Ranges through the Yolla Bolly Mountains to Snow Mountain and its environs in LakeCounty,you may follow the pine belt even into the Santa LuciaRange ofthe South Coast Ranges.But it extends even farthersouth,following the Sierra Nevada into the Tehachapi Moun-tains,Pine Mountain,or Mount Pinos,and the San Gabriel,San Bernardino,and San Jacinto Mountains,all ofwhich havean extensive area,in terms ofboth altitude and territory,in thepine belt.Even the mountains ofSan Diego County,such asPalomar Mountain,Cuyamaca Peak,and the Laguna Moun-tains,have many wildflowers and trees that are common in theSierra Nevada.Perhaps 100 species in the Sierran pine beltreach San Diego County,another 100 find their southern limitin the San Jacinto and Santa Rosa Mountains ofwestern River-side County,and 125 more reach the San Bernardino Moun-tains.In this book I have also included some plants found only in these southern ranges,as well as some confined to the CoastRanges.I have made no attempt to represent species from thehigher desert mountains,such as the White Mountains and
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INTRODUCTION
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INTRODUCTION

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