Category: Plants

  • Muwekma Ohlone Garden at Monta Loma Elementary

    When I first heard about the Castro Mound in the Monta Loma neighborhood and its subsequent destruction, I was further saddened to learn that there’s no marker acknowledging it. Now there is a memorial though, in the form of a garden, the new Living Classroom Muwekma Ohlone Garden at Monta Loma Elementary. I was happy…

  • Burr medic tastes starchy

    A little over a week ago, inspired by an interesting talk on weeds at the Garden Club of Los Altos, I kept some of the burr medic (Medicago polymorpha) I pulled from a school garden and brought it home to cook. Unlike small melilot (Melilotus indicus), which I also tried recently, burr medic grows low…

  • Small melilot flowers taste like snap peas

    Helping with weeding a Living Classroom garden today, we pulled up a lot of what Seek tells me is small melilot: I nabbed a few of the plants we pulled to give eating it a try: One source said the flowers are edible so I decided to start with them: I tried a few of…

  • Putting Foothill College’s “Native Hill” on the map

    I walked to Foothill College earlier today seeking the “Native Hill” described on this California Native Plant Society page (Archive). (I actually first heard about there being a native plant garden at Foothill College via a reference in this presentation from a Girl Scout describing her planned work at the Los Altos Woodland Library garden.)…

  • Weeding at the school

    I got to do some weeding at the school’s Living Classroom garden Saturday morning, only getting rained on a little. I’d noticed some of the weeds going to seed and so hoped to avoid some of the spread. I think I pulled out around 12 species of plants, working over around 2.5 hours. In the…

  • Poppies in Los Altos

    I’m intrigued by references to poppies in early Los Altos. For example, in a 1909 brochure from Paul Shoup, et al, marketing the area, there’s a photo of poppies with the caption: “Los Altos is famed for its fields of poppies.” And in Joe Salameda’s book “Memories of Los Altos“, J. Gilbert Smith is quoted…

  • Another walk, another weed

    I swung by the library to return some books, then picked up a few more: The game design book was waiting there for me. I searched for “startup” in the catalog on a whim, which led me to the others. (Per this Reddit thread, Game Mechanics: Advanced Game Design is also worth a look. The…

  • Another weed and buttercup blooming

    Yesterday I learned the name for another weed, again thanks to Seek: One interesting thing about petty spurge: it’s being used as a cancer treatment: “The sap from Euphorbia peplus is effective against human nonmelanoma skin cancers” (2011). I haven’t been able to find out yet why it’s called “petty”. This particular specimen I saw…

  • Walking along North San Antonio to El Camino Real

    I had a nice walk this morning, my first time walking from our new place to El Camino Real. Strava tells me the roundtrip was around 4.6 miles, the furthest I’ve gotten to walk for a while. (But I’ll hope to go much further soon.) One treat was seeing rooreh (miner’s lettuce, Claytonia perfoliata) in…