Mule Ears Never Looked So Good

Mountain Mule Ear and Arrowleaf balsamroot, Mills Creek Trail (9/24/2011) - Amanda Sweeny, © 2011 NPS

While visiting Lassen Volcanic National Park this past Friday and Saturday, I was struck by the beauty of the iridescent chartreuse Mule Ears growing in the park.  Today, color spotter Amanda Sweeny, a media specialist working for the National Park Service at Lassen Volcanic reported pretty much what I’d seen during my visit…

0-15% – Lassen Volcanic National Park – Overall, fall colors are really just beginning in the national park. The Mule Ear however, one distinctive park plant, the Mule Ear, is at peak which is actually later than normal, making the southwest area of the park particularly beautifully painted with yellow. Other subtle colors are also visible throughout the park, all while rabbitbush and lupine are still blooming!  This was a 20-year wildflower year, with various wildflowers all blooming at the same time. This also makes for some incredible contrasts of wildflowers mixing with fall colors.

California Corn Lily, Lassen VNP (9/24/2011) - Amanda Sweeny, © 2011 NPS

75%-100% – Mountain Mule Ear, Arrowleaf Balsamroot,  California

75 – 100% – Corn Lily are turning golden throughout the park.

0-15% – Quaking aspen and ferns are starting to turn near the Devastated Area.

Rubber rabbitbush, Lassen Peak (9/24/2011) - Amanda Sweeny, © 2011NPS

75%-100% – Late-blooming rubber rabbitbush is glowing roadside near Little Hot Springs Valley.

Douglas' knotweed and lupine at Lassen Peak (9/24/2011) - Amanda Sweeny, © 2011NPS

75%-100% – Douglas’ knotweed is turning red in Lassen Peak and Kings Creek areas.

California Fall Color Tip of the Day – New camping cabins at Manzanita Lake in the national park provide inexpensive, comfortable camping-styled lodging.  CLICK HERE for more details.