Friday, June 17, 2016

Euphorbia nicaeensis

Euphorbia nicaeensis

Euphorbia nicaeensis with Stachys byzantina (Lamb's Ears)

Euphorbia nicaeensis is a perennial plant, evergreen in Seattle, with new stems in spring reaching two feet in length & replacing the stems of the previous year, which wither during the summer, as in many other Euphorbia species.  It blooms in June.  The plant is easy to grow, requires very little water & good drainage.  It is a good candidate for a Mediterranean garden & really quite lovely.  Euphorbia nicaeensis is similar in size & shape to Euphorbia rigida, another worthwhile & more common species.  Euphorbia nicaeensis is a bit difficult to find.  I ordered mine from Joy Creek Nursery in Scappoose, Oregon. Euphorbia nicaeensis is native to Europe in Portugal, Spain, France, Italy & Croatia, as well as Turkey & the Caucasus.  Nicaea was an ancient city which now lies within the modern Turkish city of Iznik.  Nicaea Maritima was the ancient Roman name for the city of Nice, France.  The specific epithet 'nicaeensis' (of Nicaea) can refer to either city, both within the range of this plant.  It was likely observed by the participants of the Council of Nicaea in the year 325, which may be significant to those interested in early Christian history.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park

Sequoia sempervirens (Coast Redwood)

Prairie Creek

Cathedral Trees Trail 

Little Creek Trail

Oxalis oregana (Redwood Sorrel)

Disporum hookeri (Hooker's Fairy Bells) Photos taken in April 2014

You can find Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park in northern California between Crescent City & Eureka.  It exists in a very green & beautiful part of the world with beaches, redwood forest & meadows grazed by Roosevelt elk. You can stay at either Elk Prairie or Gold Bluffs Beach campgrounds.  But I think most people drive through this park along Newton Drury Scenic Parkway, perhaps stopping to walk some of the 75 miles of hiking trails. We walked on the Little Creek Trail from the north end of the trail to Elk Prairie, where we saw elk at a distance.  Then we walked back to the car along the Rhododendron Trail, which was not as lovely.  We saw many huge redwood trees along both trails, as well as forest plants that grow near the Pacific coast from northern California into British Columbia.  The redwoods themselves barely extend north across the Oregon border.  Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park is managed cooperatively by the National Park Service & the California Department of Parks and Recreation, along with Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park & Redwood National Park.