Bear Valley Road is a dirt road that cuts through two private farmlands (Bear Valley Ranch and Payne Ranch, totaling 12,893-acre) in Colusa County, California. It is known for mass displays of CA native wildflowers, geophytes being amongst them. It the site for bulb enthusiasts visit to see mass blooming of Fritillaria pluriflora. The area is protected under the American Land Conservancy and the Rangeland Trust. Through mutually beneficial farming practices to ranchers, native plants and their enthusiasts, cattle grazing is rotated through different sections of the farmland, allowing for regeneration of the flowers. The valley is one of the last major remnant of the expanse of miles of wildflowers that once covered the Great Central Valley written in text by John Muir. It represents the northern population of plants near the Sacramento area. A plant list is provided by the Sanhedrin Chapter of the California Native Plant Society.
Allium amplectens is distributed in many counties of California. Photo taken April 2005 by Mary Sue Ittner.
Allium fimbriatum var. purdyi is restricted to serpentine soil in the inner North Coast ranges (Colusa, Glenn, Lake, Napa counties). Flowers are white to pale lavender with darker midveins. Photos below taken by Mary Sue Ittner of plants blooming April 2005 and April 2016.
Allium serra blooming April 2005 in Bear Valley in Colusa County, California. Photo by Mary Sue Ittner.
Brodiaea elegans photograph taken by Bob Rutemoeller early June 2017. It was a bit windy so hard to get it in focus. It was growing along the road in tall dry grass.
Calochortus superbus was photographed in the first two photos taken by Mary Sue Ittner April 2016. These plants plus the Calochortus luteus photos above may actually be hybrids between Calochortus superbus and Calochortus luteus as those two species can hybridize and they were both blooming at the same time. The difference between an inverted v and a crescent shaped gland can be very subtle. The second two photos were taken by Bob Rutemoeller early June 2017.
Delphinium hesperium subsp. pallescens known as the pale flowered western larkspur is found in oak woodland and eastern slope coast ranges of California from 20 to 1000 m. Photos from Bob Rutemoeller and Mary Sue Ittner of plants growing in the grassy bank above the road with Calochortus luteus May 2016.
Delphinium variegatum the photos were taken by Mary Sue Ittner where this species was growing in the grass, under trees, and with wildflowers (Owl's clover).
Dichelostemma capitatum photos taken by Mary Sue Ittner April 2019.
Fritillaria pluriflora Photos 1-2 from Bob Werra shows a white form he saw in Bear Valley, California, an area where this species blooms some years in mass in March. Photos 3-6 were taken by Mary Gerritsen, March 2008.
Toxicoscordion fremontii (Torrey) Rydberg (syn. Zigadenus fremontii) photos below were taken by Nhu Nguyen in Bear Valley, Colusa Co., CA in late April, 2010.
Triteleia laxa photos below were taken by Mary Sue Ittner in 2005, 2016, 2019.