Most of us are familiar with geraniums and pelargoniums. Both are part of the geranium family, the geranium family. Plants of this family generally have her five petals and five sepals. The geranium family is a large family with 420 species of geraniums alone. Many other plants of this family are common in our landscapes. do you recognize them?
John Thomas Howell describes 15 different species in “Marine Flora”. Cranesbill, Geranium molle, is not native to California, but is widespread and sometimes abundant in grasslands and shrubs. The common name derives from the development of the seed into a capsule with an extended beak or beak.
Filaree, Erodium botrys, are also common in Marin County. Howell notes, “Its rosy mauve flowers influence the colors of landscapes that are recognizable at considerable distances.”
Both are early spring flowers. Look for them along the trail soon.
— Katie Martin, UC Marin Master Gardener