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San Diego's Coastal Wildflower Bloom continues practically unabated this year owing to late-season rains and cooler weather during April. On north-facing slopes and in shady canyon bottoms, where the sun's drying effects have not yet taken hold, look for native red monkeyflower, blue-eyed grass, wild hyacinth, and nonnatives such as chrysanthemum and mustard. Irrigated freeway embankments, with showy African daises, blooming ice-plant, and other forms of groomed landscaping, continue to exhibit brash coloration.

The Silk Oak Tree, a fast-growing import from Australia, comes into short-lived glory this month. Golden flower clusters decorate the silvery-green branches, an effect that is particularly stunning when seen in contrast to the blue-blossoming jacaranda trees often planted nearby. A common tree in San Diego-area parks, the silk oak is also a popular street and backyard tree in the older residential areas.

Chamise and Buckwheat, two of the most common native flowering plants in San Diego County's sage-scrub and chaparral plant communities, are in flower this month through June. Chamise, also known as greasewood, readily sprouts from root crowns after fire. Since the extensive wildfires of 2003 and 2007, much of the foothill and mountain regions of the county are again being smothered by this upstart, dominant type of drought-resistant vegetation. The stems of both chamise and buckwheat are tipped by clusters of small white or cream-colored flowers, fading to russet-brown by July. Near the coast look for flat-top buckwheat, common on south-facing slopes. Here it shares space with other low-growing sage-scrub plants like as black sage and California sagebrush.

Agaves, or century plants (Agave americana), have been sending up their asparagus-like flower stalks all over the San Diego area lately. In warm weather, the tips can rise as much as a foot a day. During summer big clusters of yellow and green flowers should appear on the tops of the stalks, some up to 30 feet tall. After the blooming cycle ends, the spine-tipped, fleshy daggers at the base of the stalk die (after a life of 10 or 20 years, not a century) and the stalk dries up, but suckers usually remain to continue a new cycle of growth, flowering, seed production, and death. The smaller desert agaves (Agave deserti), which are native to the western edge of the Anza-Borrego Desert, are now finishing their blooming cycle.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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