Signs of Spring … Gold

April 8th, 2014  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Flowers

One of the most beautiful early blooming spring flowers on the east coast of Vancouver Island is gold star or common spring-gold (Crocidium multicaule). In the Comox Valley the best show is along the narrow stretch of sandy “dunes” between the road and beach at Point Holmes. Kin Beach and the dunes at Goose Spit […]

Ecosystems In Peril: The Coastal Douglas-fir forests of British Columbia

September 27th, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Environmental Issues, Flowers, Natural History

Guest post by Vijay Somalinga Forests in British Columbia appear to stretch forever. To someone who is seeing these forests for the first time, it seems like they have remained untouched since the beginning of time. But, even the remotest stands of pristine old growth forests have been logged, and only  scattered patches of protected old-growth forests […]

Coast Boykinia on the the Rainforest Trail in Pacific Rim National Park

July 18th, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Flowers, Forests, Landscapes

While walking the Rainforest Trail in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve the tendency is to look upward—the trees are so large and dramatic and that is what immediately captures one’s attention. However, it’s also a good idea to look down once and a while and see what’s blooming. The understory is amazing in the temperate […]

Valley of the Devil’s Club

July 1st, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Shrubs

Maple-like leaves the size of a giant’s plate, clusters of bright red berries, thick twisted spine covered stems. Stumbling through a patch of Devil’s club (Oplopanax horridus) can be a memorable experience. While the common name gives some indication of the nature of the plant, the scientific name is also very appropriate. Oplo refers to the […]

Spring Hiking Conditions at Paradise Meadows

June 4th, 2013  |  By  |  Published in BC Parks, Botany, Destinations, North Vancouver Island, Sub-Alpine Flowers, Subalpine Wetlands

This weekend Jocie and I decided to venture into the snow and look for early blooming plants at Paradise Meadows in Strathcona Provincial Park. This section of the park is easily accessible once the snow pack melts and the boardwalk and trail is clear—it’s a great place to see some of the beautiful flowers that […]

Cloudberry Bog Surprise

June 2nd, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Flowers, Wetlands

My father and my uncle always talked about the “bakeapples” they used to pick in Newfoundland. Bakeapples, or cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus) also grow on the west coast of British Columbia, but they’re a little hard to come by and we’ve never found them in very large numbers. This morning Jocie and I visited a bog […]

Wildflowers at Comox Lake Bluffs Ecological Reserve

May 9th, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Ecoreserve, Flowers, Landscapes

In my previous post about the Comox Lake Bluffs Ecological Reserve I hinted that I had a few more wildflower photographs to share. The bluffs are definitely a fantastic destination for wildflower photography and there are many unique flowers that grow on the hot exposed bluffs. Chocolate Lily (Fritillaria affinis) Rusty-haired Saxifrage (Saxifraga rufidula) Grassland Saxifrage […]

Comox Lake Bluffs Ecological Reserve

April 30th, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Ecoreserve, Flowers, Landscapes

There is nothing at the parking area just beyond the dam at Comox Lake to suggest that a spectacular ecological reserve is a short 20 minute hike away. Beyond the burned rubbish and twisted metal and broken glass is a wide gravel trail that leads through an old cut block. The trail at this point has […]

Gold Star in Bloom

March 16th, 2013  |  By  |  Published in Beaches, Botany, Dunes, Flowers, Landscapes

One of the first wildflowers to bloom here in the Comox Valley is the gold star (Crocidium multicaule). Usually you can expect to see it in early March and this year it was right on schedule, brightening up the coastal gravel flats at Point Holmes and Kin Beach. It’s a small flower, about the size […]

West Mabou Beach Dunes

August 30th, 2012  |  By  |  Published in Botany, Dunes, Landscapes

A real highlight on our east coast trip, the stunning beach, great swimming and some good birding,made West Mabou Beach Provincial Park an excellent nature viewing destination. Not to be overlooked, however, was the fascinating botany of coastal dune ecosystems. Of course, trading off child-minding meant that our botanical explorations had to be short. Even so, […]

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