Tag Archives: Scotch broom

Painting springtime for pollinators.

Scotch Broom

I saw lots of blooms on my drive home from the coast yesterday, and they were all yellow or orange. Giant acacia trees in their glory, and Scotch broom everywhere. Daffodils next to farm houses, and Bermuda Buttercup, a.k.a. sourgrass.

I pulled off the road a couple of times to investigate the low orange swaths; I knew I had identified them before but couldn’t remember what I’d learned. They are Field Marigolds. I wish I could show you how their plantations look from the car window, impressionistic brush strokes in the dirt or short weeds. The whole is greater than its parts, though I like each modest flower, too. You would never know by seeing the painting, that they were in process of closing up for the evening.

Field Marigold

We saw lots of Prostrate Capeweed last month on the Marin Headlands but I didn’t know what it was. Since then I’ve seen it twice. They say it is invasive, and I believe it.

Prostrate Capeweed

I could mention the California poppies, too, which are coming out now, mostly found in yellow and orange tones. And why is it that the wildflowers of early spring are predominantly yellow? It has something to do with who pollinates them, and with that color making them more visible for the relatively few pollinators that are out working at this time of year. More flies than bees, by the way.

I bet there are a few flies in this field of mustard!