Gilia millefoliata – dark-eyed gilia,  CNPS List 1B.2

by Doreen Smith

Marin County is likely the Southern limit for this small annual plant of coastal sand dunes. Populations exist in Sonoma, Mendocino and Del Norte Counties also Southern  Oregon.  Efforts have been made to reintroduce it to a site in San Francisco near Baker Beach. Some of these locations are threatened by coastal development, non-native weeds and human activities. The easiest way to see plants in Marin is in April and May on Point Reyes near the Bull Point trail, in a sandy depression that was once a waste-pit for Abandoned “F” Ranch. Other locations are by the Abbotts  Lagoon trail and on Lunny “G”Ranch.

Usually plants are short and hard to find, they are sticky-glandular and get covered with sand grains.  The small blue flowers can have blue or white pollen. After fertilization the seed calyces and capsules swell, a diagnostic feature helping to separate them from similar small annual Gilia species like Gilia clivorum, though they are not usually found growing in the same habitat.

Photos by Vernon Smith

Gilia millefoliata – (dark-eyed gilia)

 

Gilia millefoliata – (dark-eyed gilia)

 

Gilia millefoliata – (dark-eyed gilia)