• Big Pines Meadow
  • Among the corn lilies
  • Iron Mountain & East Fork
  • Mt. Pinos
  • At Bob's Gap
  • Returning from Mt. Lowe
  • Big Pines Meadow
  • Among the corn lilies
  • Iron Mountain & East Fork
  • Mt. Pinos
  • At Bob's Gap
  • Returning from Mt. Lowe



Both members and visitors are welcome at our regular meetings, held at Eaton Canyon Nature Center beginning at 7:30 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month except July, August, November, and December. The meetings are preceded from 7:00 to 7:30 p.m. by social time and informal plant identification.

San Gabriel Mountains
Thursday, March 28, 2019: Sage Against the Machine - a night of California native plant songs and stories: Join us as we welcome the duo ‘Sage Against The Machine’ for a captivating hour of native plant-themed music and stories about living and working with California native plants.  From the punk rock-inspired ‘Kill Your Lawn!’, to the tragic love ballad ‘Your Love is Like A Manzanita’, and the toe-tapping ‘Rare Plant Blues’, native plant horticulturists and musicians Evan Meyer and Antonio Sanchez promise to keep the night lively and fun.  Their unique collection of original songs and stories explore native plant conservation and horticultural themes in a sometimes funny, sometimes heartbreaking, but always entertaining fashion.  A unique native plant presentation not to be missed!

Sage Against The Machine is a piano/ guitar duo of native plant nerds who joined forces at Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden in 2013.  Pianist and vocalist Evan Meyer has worked as a professional musician in New England and is currently Assistant Director of the Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden at UCLA.  Guitarist and vocalist Antonio Sanchez has been an amatuer musician for over a decade, and is currently Assistant Nursery Manager at Growing Works Nursery in Camarillo.

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Bee on manzanita
Thursday, April 25, 2019,m 7:30 p.m.: Rediscovering ourselves through native plants and nature, with Richard Halsey: For more than two million years we evolved outside, in Nature, driven by our instincts. Over the last several thousand years, our newly conscious minds have tried to reconcile the conflict between the demands of civilization, social expectations, and our ancient, wild selves. Yet despite our best efforts, the conflict persists, causing many of the personal, social, and environmental problems we face today. Nature provides the remedy. Native plants provide the path. Join us as we explore how connecting with Nature through local native habitats offers us a way to achieve what so many philosophers through the ages have identified as essential to achieving a meaningful existence — to “know thyself.”

Besides being the Chaparral Institute's director, Richard W. Halsey is also a writer, photographer, and most importantly, a guide to help others reconnect with Nature and their wild, inner selves.

Halsey has given more than 500 presentations and written numerous books, research papers, and articles over the past 15 years concerning chaparral ecology and the importance of reestablishing our connection with Nature. Richard also works with the San Diego Museum of Natural History and continues to teach natural history throughout the state. He founded and has been leading the Chaparral Naturalist Certification Program over the past five years. The second edition of his book, Fire, Chaparral, and Survival in Southern California, was awarded the 2008 Best Nonfiction-Local Interest Book by the San Diego Book Awards Association.

Richard earned undergraduate degrees from the University of California in environmental studies and anthropology. During graduate work he received teaching credentials in life, physical and social science and a Master's in education. Richard taught biology, physics, and environmental science for over thirty years in both public and private schools, was honored as Teacher of the Year for San Diego City Schools, and was awarded the Christa McAuliffe Fellowship which allowed him to begin writing his first book.

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Sticky monkey flower
Thursday, May 23, 2019, 7:30 p.m.: La Tuna Canyon regeneration, with Kitty Connolly: On September 1, 2017, a fire broke out in La Tuna Canyon, about four miles from the Theodore Payne Foundation. Even while the fire was burning, Canyon residents were speculating about what to plant to stabilize the steep slopes. We saw the urgent need for education so, on September 16, we launched La Tuna Canyon Regeneration, a series of free lectures and classes about fire ecology and fire-wise landscaping. This shared disaster was an opportunity to raise awareness in our community of natural post-fire regeneration and direct the impulse to replant into a public project at the neighborhood fire station. We provided service when it was needed, demonstrating that Theodore Payne Foundation exists for the public good.

Kitty Connolly is Executive Director of the Theodore Payne Foundation. Since joining Theodore Payne in 2014, Kitty has led the organization through construction, strategic planning, and expanding programs so that today, the Foundation’s impact is felt across Los Angeles County. Previously, Kitty planned and directed interpretation for The Huntington Botanical Gardens and Smithsonian Institution. A life-long environmentalist, she holds a B.S. in environmental zoology from Ohio University and a M.A. in geography from UCLA. Her own native garden is a work in progress.

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Past programs of our chapter: See the Past Activities page.

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California Native Plant Week, April 13-21, 2019: In 2010, the California Native Plant Society was successful in persuading the state legislature designate the third week in April each year as “California Native Plant Week”. The legislature recognized that “California native plants, being perfectly suited to California's climate and soil, require far fewer fertilizers, soil amendments, or pesticides, and use 60 to 90 percent less water than conventional landscapes.” What the legislature didn’t mention, is the beauty and resilience of our native plants! This year, native plant week is April 13 through 21, and we invite you to share your excitement and joy, and your own experiences with native plants, with the people in your life and the community you live and work in.

How? Here are some ideas:
- Invite your family and friends to attend with you any number of the special events listed below.
- Share a native plant bouquet from your own garden (or a friend’s garden with their permission) with your neighbors, your colleagues at work, or your local library.
- Share a native plant with your city council or local representative, accompanied by a complementary Flora or Fremontia magazine and an informational card indicating that the flowers are from a private garden and not picked in the wild. CNPS can provide free magazines and cards.

Click here to download a POSTER (requires 11 x 17-inch paper for full-size printing).

A series of special events is planned in our area during California Native Plant Week. For details, click here to see the CNPW notice in the FIELD OUTINGS section below on this page.

For additional information, see the CNPS state web site's special page.

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Email notification: If you wish to be notified by email of upcoming field trips, please click here to subscribe to our email list.

Leaders: Each outing has one or more appointed leaders. It is not necessary to contact the leader beforehand in order to participate. All you need to do is turn up for the event.

Eaton Canyon Plant Walks

Plant walks are held on the second Sunday of each month except July and August.

Meet inside Eaton Canyon Nature Center on the back patio at 9:00 a.m. Then go on a leisurely walk, about 2 hours, through the native plant garden that surronds the Center and into the nearby wild areas. The walk is different each time — what's leafing out, flowering, in seed, etc., determines what your leade will talk about — and different leaders bring drifferent points of view.

Eaton Canyon Nature Center
Current plant walks:  
Sunday, February 10, 2019, 09:00

Sunday, March 10, 2019, 09:00

Sunday, April 14, 2019, 09:00

Sunday, May 12, 2019, 09:00

Sunday, June 9, 2019, 09:00

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Field outings for 2019

We sponsor outings on occasional dates throughout the year, usually on a Saturday. The walking ranges from easy, typically on wide fire roads, to moderately strenuous, such as on forest trails. If a convenient place is available nearby, we love to picnic afterward. Weather is unpredictable; snow, rain, fire and ice cancel.

Important note: The chapter does not advertise all field trips in the newsletter. Instead we have two levels of field trip, those with dates known well ahead to places expected to be good regardless of the season; and spur-of-the-moment trips organized with 1 to 2 weeks of notice, based on seasonal conditions and notified via this web site, email, and Facebook. This gives us more flexibility in finding wildflowers in bloom or fall color at its peak.

Deukmejian Wilderness Park
Saturday, March 23, 2019, 10a.m.: Rim of the Valley Trail, Deukmejian Wilderness Park: Grade moderate, round trip approximately 2.5 miles, elevation gain and loss approximately 800 feet. Leader, Helena Bowman. Rain cancels.

The Rim of the Valley Trail leads through chaparral, sage scrub and riparian habitats to Haines Canyon Road and eventually (via the road) to the summit of Mt. Lukens. We will go only as far as the streambed in Cook's Canyon, a distance of about 1.2 miles. With the abundant rainfall this winter, annual wildflowers should be putting on a good display; many have already made their appearance. We will also see many of the chaparral shrubs in flower. The views across Crescenta Valley to the Verdugo Mountains are spectacular. Bring something to eat; we'll have lunch in the picnic area when the walk is finished.

Directions: Deukmejian Wilderness Park, 3429 Markridge Road, La Crescenta:
From the 210 Freeway, take exit 17A for Pennsylvania Avenue. Go north on Pennsylvania to Foothill Blvd. and turn left. Turn right on New York Avenue; continue to Markridge Road and to the park entrance. Restrooms are available near the parking area. Note: This is a popular hiking spot especially on weekends. It may be necessary to park along Markridge Road and walk up the park entrance road. We will meet at 10:00 a.m. in front of the historic Le Mesnager barn.

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April 13-21, 2019: California Native Plant Week: In 2019, California Native Plant week is April 13 through 21. See the information above on this page in the SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS section for an introduction to California Native Plant Week.

The following series of special events is planned in our area during California Native Plant Week 2019. Click here to download a document containing details of these events.

Saturday, April 13, 2019, 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Native Plant Week Symposium, Wildflower Show, Plant and Book Sale
at Sepulveda Garden Center, 16633 W Magnolia Blvd, Encino, CA 91436, offered by LA/Santa Monica Mountains chapter of CNPS and the Theodore Payne Foundation. The Symposium will feature the following speakers:
10:00 – 11:30 a.m., Tim Becker: “How Native Can the Garden Get? Embracing Localism in the Landscape”
12:00 noon – 1:30 p.m., David Newsom: “Wild Yards Project: The New Wilderness Begins at Home”
2:00 – 3:30 p.m., Cynthia Powell: “New Calflora Tools for CNPS Users: Mapping & Surveying Enhancements”
For more info on this free event go to the Los Angeles / Santa Monica Mountains chapter's web site.

Sunday, April 14, 2019, 9:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon:
Botanizing at Big Tujunga Wash Rare Plant Treasure Hunt at Hansen Dam. Following the April 13 “Symposium, Wildflower Show and Plant Sale” at Sepulveda Garden Center (previous item above), Cynthia Powell with Calflora based in Berkeley will provide instruction on Calflora’s cellphone app, and Keir Morse from Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden will lead a Rare Plant Treasure Hunt at Hansen Dam basin. Meet at the paved parking lot of Orcas Park, about 500 feet beyond the Hansen Dam Horse Park entrance, accessed from Foothill Blvd via Orcas Avenue, about midway between the I-210 freeway exits at Osborne Street and Wheatland Ave. Wear protective clothing and water-repellent boots for hiking on horse trails with shallow-water stream crossings. For more information contact Bill Neill at bgneill@earthlink.net.

Monday, April 15, 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.
Morning Flower Stroll at the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area, in Irwindale.
Meet at the Nature Center (north of the lake, in the natural area). Mobility challenged and children’s strollers are welcome. A vehicle admission fee may apply. For more information contact leaders Cliff and Gabi McLean, at gabi.mclean@verizon.net.

Tuesday, April 16, 3:30 to 5:00 p.m.
Capture Nature’s Beauty through your Favorite Art Medium:  draw, sketch, and photograph, compose a poem, or write a haiku.  We will observe together and then give each participant opportunity to memorialize their impression in their own personal way.  For all ages.  Meet at Eaton Canyon Nature Center, Pasadena. For more information contact Gabi McLean at gabi.mclean@verizon.net.

Wednesday, April 17, 7:30 to 9:00 p.m.
“Fantastic Flora of California” presented by Adam Searcy. This program is offered by Pasadena Audubon Society at Eaton Canyon Nature Center, Pasadena. Social time is from 7:00 to 7:30 pm, followed at 7:30 pm by general meeting and presentation.

Thursday, April 18, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Happy Hour for Young Angelinos in Land Care: A networking opportunity — chat with likeminded young gardeners, landscapers, plant and land lovers over a beer at Angel City Brewery, 216 Alameda St., Los Angeles. This is a chance for young folks interested in caring for the land to network outside the social media world and start some interesting conversations about how young people can use native plants in caring for the land, in Los Angeles and beyond! This event is cosponsored by Saturate, Inc. www.saturatecalifornia.com and CNPS. For more information contact Anna Muriello at atmuriello@gmail.com.

Friday, April 19, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.
Bag Lunch and Poetry Reading among the Flowers, Eaton Canyon Nature Center, patio or picnic area. We have some poems and please bring your own! And bring your own lunch. For questions contact Gabi McLean at gabi.mclean@verizon.net.

Saturday, April 20, 2019, 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon
Saddleback Butte State Park, Antelope Valley: This trip will explore the plants and ecology of the central Antelope Valley. There is an entrance fee of $6 per car. Leader is Mickey Long.  For more information see the notice below on this web page..

Any day, any time: Share and enjoy! Cut flowers from your garden and take to work, to school, or to your favorite libaray.

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Saddleback Butte
Saturday, April 20, 2019, 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon: Saddleback Butte State Park, Antelope Valley: Grade easy to moderate. Leader Mickey Long.

This trip will explore the plants and ecology of the central Antelope Valley. The leader will discuss the ecosystem as a whole, plants, birds, reptiles and desert ecology with emphasis on vegetation. We hope the great rains were sufficient to provide for wildflowers, but desert plants are interesting regardless. We may hike part of the trail (2.5 mi.) to the top of the butte. A second stop somewhere in bloom may be an option.

Directions: Saddleback Butte is located approximately 17 miles East of Lancaster. Take the 14 (Antelope Valley Fwy) north to exit at East Avenue “J” in Lancaster. Travel east on Avenue J to the junction with 170th St. east. Meet at 8:30 a.m. along the dirt shoulder at the junction of Ave. J and 170th. Water and toilets are located near the picnic area inside the State Park. Wear good sturdy shoes or boots, a hat, bring water and snacks, and a lunch if you wish to join us at the covered picnic areas. There is an entrance fee of $6 per car.

Further information: Check out http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=618. Click on “Brochures” and download the Park Brochure for a park map & directions.

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South Pasadena Nature Park
Saturday, May 18, 2019, 9:30 a.m.: South Pasadena Nature Park: Grade: Easy, but the entrance includes a slight hill with bumpy terrain, so is not wheelchair accesisble. Leader: Barbara Eisenstein.

The South Pas Nature Park (officially, South Pasadena Arroyo Seco Woodland and Wildlife Park) was dedicated as a nature park in October of 2004.   This four-acre parcel along the Arroyo Seco flood control channel is graced with mature coast live oaks, southern walnuts and western sycamores. Planted with sage, buckwheat and other native coastal sage scrub plants, the park provides an inviting environment for birds, lizards, squirrels and numerous other critters. The following are among the many plants that typically bloom in May: scarlet bugler, showy penstemon, yellow penstemon, sacred datura, purple sage, coyote melon, narrow-leaf milkweed, California buckwheat, bush sunflower, sticky monkeyflower, poppies, globe gilia, and clarkia. Special features include educational signage, a certified monarch butterfly waystation, and a labyrinth garden.

Directions and recommendations: The location is the 100 block of Pasdena Avenue, South Pasadena. Google maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/iWXNojstg2L2  A hat, walking shoes and water are recommended. Wear work clothes if you wish to join the Friends of the Nature Park work party, following the walk. The volunteer Friends meet weekly and are responsible for improving the habitat and maintaining the Park. No amenities at the Park, but there are public restrooms about a quarter of a mile from the Park in the Arroyo Seco Golf Course restaurant.

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Past outings/field trips of our chapter: See the Past Events page.

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Statewide and other CNPS chapter events

None currently listed here: You may find relevant items on the state CNPS web site.

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Our chapter becomes involved in projects from time to time. Some recent projects include:

Lily Spring Area Survey: Click here for the Lily Spring Area Survey page.

The Paintbrush Quest: A survey of Castilleja gleasoni, our chapter logo. Click here for the Paintbrush Quest pages.

Millard Canyon Project — a fundraiser in support of Altadena Foothills Conservancy

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Next board meeting: See the Our Chapter page. Everyone is welcome.

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Our Annual Plant Sale

Held in early November, typically the first Saturday, at Eaton Canyon Nature Center. See the Plant sale page for details.

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Sunland Welcome Nature Garden
Volunteer opportunity: Sunland Welcome Nature Garden: The Sunland Welcome Nature Garden, a volunteer native plant garden on Sunland Boulevard at the 210 freeway, is a showcase of local native plants. Stop in and smell the flowers, visit the garden's Facebook page, or contact the garden's instigator Roger Klemm at treehuggers@ca.rr.com for more information or to join in the next workday.

Southern California Botanists: See their Field Trips and events page (click here.)

Natural Sciences Section of Angeles Chapter of the Sierra Club, 2015 outings: For their current schedule, please see their web site (click here.)

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Click here for the past activities page.

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