Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Red Car Property: FIESTA!

Photo: Jay Lieske, March 19, 2017.  Native Blue Fiesta Flowers (Pholistoma auritum) reclaimed the slope at the Adelbert cut-through on the Red Car Property.  (Click on photos to enlarge.)

Lieske, a longtime Red Car Property neighbor, reports the Blue Fiesta Flowers are thriving in the slope between the Adelbert cut-through to Fletcher.  Lieske said, "The Fiesta Flowers are even climbing up the chain-link fence around the construction."
Photo: Diane Edwardson, March 13, 2009.  In 2009, we first discovered and documented a few Blue Fiesta Flowers near the Adelbert cut-through to the Red Car Property.

2016 was a lean year for the ever festive Fiesta Flowers due to the extraordinary drought combined with the removal of more than dozen large Eucalyptus that died suddenly over the course of 2 years. This alone changed the ecosystem dramatically due to the loss of shade as well as water and carbon storage capacity of the huge trees.  The north end of the Red Car Property which had always been cooler and more damp, suddenly became an inhospitable place, hotter and drier than the previous 26 years I'd walked the property.

Further destroying habitat, in August2016, an entire forest of trees  (including scores of protected native Black Walnuts that had begun to grow back after the 2014 illegal tree removal) was clear cut for the development of the Riverside Drive lots north of Gilroy, further changing the climate and ecosystem in the neighborhood.  

Let's hope the remaining protected native trees on this section of the Red Car Property recover from the past 6 years of extreme drought and stupidity development, encouraging the entire native plant community and the diversity of wildlife it supports to return to the north end of the property.

Click here for all our Blue Fiesta Flower photos and related posts.