Plants and Fungi

From majestic 300-foot redwoods to the luscious black witch’s butter mushroom, the San Francisco Bay Area is alive with plants and fungi. Yet many of these rooted natives are threatened by the twin forces of development and invasive species, making their survival particularly critical for the food web.

Identifying With Lichen

February 01, 2016 by Elizabeth Lopatto

In which California is the first state to have a state lichen.

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Mike Vasey: The Magic of Manzanitas

January 07, 2016 by Sue Rosenthal

Manzanita expert Mike Vasey wants to share the world of these fascinating shrubs with the public.

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Ask the Naturalist: The Secret of the Slender Redwoods

September 03, 2015 by David Herlocker

Why are some stands of redwoods so spindly? Marin County Parks naturalist David Herlocker explains this anomaly.

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Killer Plant Pathogen Is Widespread at SFPUC’s Alameda County and Peninsula Restoration Sites

July 16, 2015 by Alison Hawkes

Phytophthora tentaculata, a new and particularly pernicious strain of dangerous plant pathogens that has been on a federal watch list, was found throughout one of the SFPUC's restoration sites in central Alameda County.

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Native Plant Nurseries Get Ahead of Dangerous Pathogens

June 29, 2015 by Alison Hawkes

Perhaps the biggest contribution to the fight against phytophthora has been a call to action in the restoration nursery trade.

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Phytophthora: New Strains Breaking the Mold

June 29, 2015 by Alison Hawkes

Phytophthoras, Greek for “plant destroyers,” certainly live up to the name. Once introduced to a location, they can spread undetected in the soil or in water and wreak havoc on crops, nursery stock, and natural ecosystems.

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To Save a Park in San Francisco’s Bayview, Advocates Turn to Citizen Science “With a Mission”

June 18, 2015 by Eric Simons

Development could wipe out one of the Bayview's few open space areas. Nature in the City hopes knowing more about what lives there can stop the construction.

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Calochortus Lilies Catch the Eye

May 04, 2015 by Lech Naumovich

It’s the calochortus lily's floral display that catches everyone’s eyes: from the pendant snowy drops of the white fairy lantern to the purplish hirsute petals of Tolmie’s pussy ears to the open golden landing pad adorned with rich burgundy splashes of the yellow mariposa lily, the flowers of this genus regularly inspire awe and cause digital camera cards to fill up quickly.

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A Natural History of That Little Yellow Flower That’s Everywhere Right Now

March 11, 2015 by Chelsea Leu

Oxalis provides a delightful burst of yellow color in the spring. Also, it's eating the entire Bay Area alive.

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‘Slow Coast’ May Get a National Monument

February 16, 2015 by Kaitlyn Kraybill-Voth

Santa Cruz Redwoods National Monument has a certain ring to it.

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