Delayed response

I've noticed recently that the local desert marigold (Baileya multiradiata) population has increased substantially this year. I suspect that the heavy October 2018 rains stimulated many seeds to germinate, as happened with so many other species at the time. Desert marigold is a short-lived perennial that only begins flowering in its second season so I only now noticed the population jump.

Desert marigold flowers are a good place to look for native pollinators and for the spiders that hunt them. Look amongst and below the petals for the latter. I can't remember having seen a feral honeybee working their blossoms, though they are a seemingly constant presence on brittlebush and other flowers. Perhaps they are too heavy and tip them. Or maybe I'm just forgetful.

Posted on April 28, 2020 10:51 PM by stevejones stevejones


Phenology studies here are so complicated by elevation, slope and the extreme precipitation variability from place to place.

Posted by mjplagens about 3 years ago (Flag)

I'd be surprised if feral honeybees don't visit them, as they are on almost every other type of flower. I even saw some chewing through the side of Astragalus flowers to steal their nectar!

Posted by conorflynn about 3 years ago (Flag)

I'd be surprised, too, Conor. I lean towards me being forgetful. I'll keep my eyes open for them.

Cirsium neomexicanum and Erigeron divergens also seem to have benefitted from the October 2018 rains inducing exceptional germination. Both are much more common than usual this spring.

Posted by stevejones about 3 years ago (Flag)

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