Wildflower Hotline F.A.Q.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where's the Online version of the
Enjoy, photograph, but don't
Picking a couple wildflowers won't
hurt, right? It is against the law to pick wildflowers on
public lands or roads or on private property. You can be fined for
this. More importantly, picking wildflowers reduces the beauty
for others to enjoy, not to mention the loss of seeds for next year's
What exactly is a
A wildflower is a
wild, uncultivated flowering plant. Most people use the word wildflower
to mean non-woody native plants other than grasses. This is the sense in
which the word is used in the Foundationís full name: The Theodore Payne
Foundation for Wildflowers and Native Plants, Inc.
or non-woody native plants, are annuals, completing their life cycle
over the course of a single year or season. California poppies (Eschscholzia
californica) are usually annuals. Other wildflowers, such as Hookerís
evening primrose (Oenothera hookeri), are biennials. Still others, such
as blue dicks (Dichelostemma capitatum) and Douglas iris (Iris
douglasiana), are perennials, coming up each spring from a bulb or
rhizome, then dying back in the dry season.
wildflower is also frequently used to refer to all native flowering
plants of an area, including woody perennials, shrubs, and even trees.
The Wildflower Hotline includes these wildflowers in its reports, too.
donít you mention nonnative plants, like mustard and filaree, on the
The Theodore Payne
Foundation exists to raise awareness about Californiaís unique native
flora, which is among the richest anywhere in the world. Although
nonnative plants can be attractive, they take space, water, and
nutrients away from native plants and can often be invasive. Our native
mustards and filarees are routinely out-competed by European and Asian
imports that spread rampantly and damage delicate ecosystems.
more about invasive exotic plants, explore these links: