Thursday, April 11, 2013

Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, Bot-woman!

A complete bot-woman's utility belt!
My lovely field assistant, Chul Paik, has furnished my collecting efforts with some of the best utility belt supplies one could ever need. The Felco Pruners are fantastic and the leather sheath is nicely worn in. Whereas my field sword and GPS holster have some time before it looks weathered. It will be nice to take an after shot of the leather when my flora is nearing completion (some time to wait till then). This utility belt kind of makes me feel like...Batman (or more like Botwoman).

Entering Sage Canyon
This past weekend I returned to the Wilderness. I found this trip to be one of my favorites thus far. We ventured to Sage Canyon, a place where minimal collections have been made. This canyon is amazing! I am obsessed with it. There are cottonwoods, willows, sagebrush, Joshua trees, Pinyons and more! We drove to the end of the road in Sage Canyon, parked the car and seriously spent all day in one rock outcrop. One rock outcrop! I thought we were going to get farther up the canyon, maybe summit the plateau, but that didn't happen. We were captivated by the Dudleya growing all over the granite boulders, and an interesting desert spring.

Again we were too early to collect. Many plants are still in their budding phase. This seems to be my reoccurring theme. However, the Joshua trees are now open and some are starting to fruit. Collecting a Joshua tree was a bit of a challenge, but I pulled it off.

Not yet collected in the Wilderness

Bad cone!
This time the weather was a little unkind. All day Saturday the wind was howling and nudging us, as if to let us know we were not welcome. A couple of strong gusts had me worried. The wind carried on through most of the night. The rain-fly was flapping against the tent but I seemed to sleep right through it. Poor Chul did not rest well. In fact this trip was not kind to Chul at all. A large Pinus sabiniana cone tore his knuckle open and a Cholla fiercely pierced the back of his hand. 

Over all I made more collections and found the south facing canyons to be more productive. We ventured over to Bird Springs Pass to see what the condition was like on the west side of the Wilderness. Interestingly the west side is a lot drier but it's where I continue to stumble across neat belly-flowers. 

Chaenactis sp. only one seen

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