Slender-horned spineflower seeds collected last month by the California Botanic Garden are being cleaned and counted for use in seed bulking – meaning they will be grown in a controlled nursery setting to allow for the harvesting of even more seeds, without jeopardizing habitat.
Care is given to ensure genetic diversity of the seeds by collecting them from as many locations as possible. This helps to protect the overall health of the species. Many seeds will be planted in fall, while others will be safety stored for future plantings.
The tiny seed of the slender-horned spineflower is characteristic of the plant’s name. Just 2 millimeters in height, it is about as tall as the edge of a nickle. To learn more about the California Botanic Garden, visit CalBG.org. (Graphic credit: California Department of Fish and Wildlife.)