Marin County Angelica species

by Doreen Smith

Marin has three species of Angelica, they are large and magnificent perennial plants in the “Queen Anne’s Lace” group aka the Umbellifers, the Plant Family Apiaceae. The umbellate flower-heads look much alike, usually each flower is white, and the leaves are difficult to describe without involving botanical jargon. However, the habitat is different for each species.

Angelica hendersonii (coast angelica) grows on rocky headlands from N to S. of Marin, particularly on Pt. Reyes.

Angelica californica (California angelica) is found in open, mixed evergreen forest or on well- drained N-facing slopes and roadsides such as Lucas Valley Road. Some tall plants can be seen there,  growing east of the Big Rock until roadside maintenance cuts them down.

Angelica tomentosa (woolly angelica) has an affinity for serpentine seeps.  Some populations on the North slopes of Mt Tamalpais in Big Carson Canyon have pinkish flowers.

Photos by Vernon and Doreen Smith

Angelica hendersonii – (coastal Angelica)


Photo by Vernon Smith

Angelica californica – (California Angelica)


Angelica tomentosa – (woolly Angelica)