Monday, May 2, 2011

San Diego Trip

Washingtonia filifera, Mountain Palm Springs, Anza Borrego State Park.

I'm back from Southern California, and mostly recovered from a long but exciting week of plant talks, desert walks and generally eating a lot of avocados and oranges. My presentations at the CSSA Conference went over pretty well, it seemed. The one on nomenclatural changes (the breakup of the portulaca family, the disappearance of the genus Monadenium etc.) got a bigger audience response than my Conophytum show, weirdly enough. I attended a lot of great talks, too, and was especially interested in the presentations by the two South African speakers, Gideon Smith and Andrew Hankey.

I went on one of the CSSA field trips to Anza Borrego State Park, which was spectacular, with thousands of barrel cacti (Ferocactus cylindraceus), ocotillos (Fouquieria splendens), and a walk out to a refreshingly cool palm oasis. I also spent some time at Balboa Park in San Diego, visiting with Steve Hammer in Vista, and exploring beautiful Torrey Pines State Reserve on the coast. I'll write more later, and maybe try to work some of my better photos together into some kind of slide show for the Connecticut CSS.


Julie said...

It all sounded wonderful!!! Love Balboa Park, Torrey Pines, Anza Borrego, and whole darn lower part of the state! Congrats on your talks that you gave. The avacado and orange diet sounds good to me! I remember the killer sized and sweet, delicious grapes they had out there also!!!

Alex said...

Portulacaceae has been broken up! I simply can't keep up with all the changes. I hope when much of the family level details shake out someone thoroughly updates Heywood's book. I need pictures and maps.

Matt said...

Thanks Julie! The San Diego area is really nice (which of course means it is also really crowded and expensive!).

Alex: The Portulacaceae were a grab bag of not especially related groups clustering around the cactus family and the Didieriaceae. Most have been moved to existing families, with a few getting put into the new families Talinaceae (Talinum and relatives) and Anacampserotaceae (Anacampseros & friends). It would be nice if someone updated Flowering Plants of the World, which is a neat reference.