Bloom Blog

Wildflower/Waterfall Reports

Please send us your  wildflower viewing reports and photos. 
Wildflower/Waterfall Tours

Plumas County Wildflowers Page

Read Bloom Blog from 2014


Hello, and welcome to the Plumas County "Bloom Blog" and waterfalls viewing page!
Our goal is to keep wildflower/waterfall enthusiasts informed about where specific wildflowers and waterfalls can be found throughout Plumas County. Please send us your own sightings and photos! And don't forget the species identification, if you know it!

Watercolor courtesy: Linda Blum    


March 28, 2015
Today's report from Joe Willis gives a summary of his recent findings are Quincy.

Joe's report: "Here are a few photos from the last few days of flowers growing around Quincy. Mostly at the college and nearby. Today I'm going to the Oakland Camp area again and hiking along the west side of Spanish Creek. Will report later today on my findings. The Dutchman's Pipevine shown here is growing in a secret spot in downtown Quincy."

Dutchman's Pipevine




Oregon Grape

Meadow Foam


March 24, 2015

We have a new report today from Joe Willis. Very interesting information, not only on wildflowers, but on hiking trails around Quincy. Joe writes:

What used to be called the Keddie Cascades Trail, together with the area's many deer paths, has undergone a lot of revision recently, and there are now signs and maps galore. On Sunday, we began our hike at a trail head by the bridge over Spanish Creek on the Oakland Camp Road. It's across the road from the popular swimming hole. We started off on what is called the Spanish Traverse. If we had stayed on this trail, I think we would have come out in the vicinity of the Keddie Cascades. But, we opted to head further up hill by taking what was called the Spanish Ridge loop.

Altogether we hiked close to five miles and found a surprising number of spring wildflowers blooming. There's one purple species I haven't yet identified, but it looks like it might be a Penstemon. Some of them were so fleshy and beautiful, they looked like they could have come as potted plants in a nursery, despite the very dry soil, or even apparent lack of soil. It's obvious the area has been logged, probably several times, and much of it has inadequate soil for growing trees. This, Manzanita, Black Oak, Buck Brush, and Silk Tassel Bush dominate the drier hills. At the highest point on the ridge trail there were abundant patches of Death Camas ( a lily) and Shooting Star. These areas were relatively flat and had a fair amount of soil consisting mostly of pine needles. We saw the early leaves of lots of species that haven't bloomed yet and thus promises an interesting spring. Among those is the Heart-leaf Milkweed pictured here. There were also lots of Lupine, Horkelia, Fennel, Pennyroyal, and various lilies.

Blue-eye Mary

Heart-leaf Milkweed

Pine Violet

Pine Violet

Rock Garden

Shelton's Violet

Shooting Star

Shooting Star


March 23, 2015
As promised, Joe Willis sent us six more photos from his trip to Table Mountain last week. He sent this report with his photos, and another promise of more to come! Here's his report:
My first submissions from Table Mountain were of the more plentiful wildflowers that everyone who hikes there sees. Today I'm sending photos of some that many people never see. They are either relatively uncommon or are good at hiding in crevices and other shady places. All but the Manroot can be found as high as the Quincy elevation a month or so later than at Table Mountain.
Some spring wildflowers are starting to appear around Quincy, so I'll send some photos I took yesterday around Oakland Camp.

Bird's-foot Fern

California Manroot

Bush Lupine

Mountain Jewelflower

Wild Hyacinth

Three-parted Woodland Star



March 16, 2015

Intrepid reporter and photographer Joe Willis really outdid himself over the weekend. He and his son ventured down to Table Mountain, just outside Oroville, and sent this report and wonderful photos:

We drove down Feather River Canyon early Saturday morning and saw several species of wildflowers blooming: Red Larkspur, Wall Flower, Bush Monkeyflower, Redbud, and Waterfall Buttercup. We didn't stop because we had a long hike planned for Table Mountain. It turned out to be a lot longer than we planned because we got a bit lost. Probably covered at least 15 miles.

The effects of drought years were apparent, but even a below-average year on Table Mountain is still spectacular. The warm and partly cloudy day offered perfect lighting for flower photography. Here's a baker's dozen from our trip. I'll send another 7 or 8 soon.

There were lots of people - some arriving by tour bus! Seeing that was a first for me! Lots of bicycles, cars, and possible some walked from nearby homes. Lots of dogs, kites, and portable musical devices near the parking lot. But after hiking just a short distance we found more flowers than people and it was quite pleasant. My memory card was filled before the end of our hike so I missed getting photos of some great flowers like Fairy Lanterns, Tidy Tips, and various species of Phacelia and Larkspur.

Some some fine waterfalls, too, but got confused and never found our main objective, Phantom Falls. We did find another impressive waterfall that looked like a slightly smaller version of Phantom Falls, complete with a cave behind the cascade and lots of Dippers visiting. I'm going to try to figure out where we went by studying Google Earth. Then maybe I'll find out which waterfall we visited. Remember, "not all who wander are lost."

Table Mountain Icons Table Mountain Meadowfoam
Sky Lupine Seep Monkeyflower
Purple Owl's Clover Fiddleneck
Kellogg's Monkeyflower Bird's Eye Gilia
Dutchman's Pipe Douglas Violet
Bitterroot California Newt
Goldfields and friends


March 10, 2015

We're still enjoying our spring weather here in Plumas County, and the days have been perfect for short trips to enjoy the wildflowers.
True to his word, Joe Willis did take a jaunt around Quincy over the weekend, and sent this report (and some good advice) and photos:

Things are blooming in Plumas County at the Quincy elevation, but most will not be noticed while driving. I recommend that people pull off the roads in safe places and walk around looking carefully among the blades of grass and the remnants of last season's "weeds." Only then will your eyes and brain adjust to seeing the pretty little white, pink, and yellow spring wildflowers. My most productive stops over the weekend were the nature trail on the FRC campus and the Old Keddie Highway, just 4.1 miles north of Quincy, that takes you to the head of the Keddie Cascades Trail.

Dusky Horkelia Henbit
Filaree Elegant Rock Cress
Lemon Willow Milkmaids

March 6, 2015

We're happy to post more Redbud photos from our newest "Bloom Blogger" Dave Mckee. "These pictures were taken this last Saturday near the old 'Grandview' overlook in between Scooters and Pulga on Highway 70 in the Feather River Canyon."

March 5, 2015

We're back! It seems spring is here, even though we're technically still in winter. We received our first wildflower report of the year from Joe Willis, avid photographer, blogger, and Feather River College instructor. He drove down the beautiful Feather River Canyon over the last week and submitted his photos. As usual, his photography skills are superb. Here's his report:

These were taken in the lower canyon between Rock Creek Powerhouse and Jarbo Gap on either Friday Feb 13 or Friday Feb 27. Most of these will eventually be blooming further up Feather River Canyon and some all the way into Quincy and above.

Joe added that if anyone is interested in the scientific names for these flowers, feel free to contact him. You'll also be interested to read Joe's blog about wildflowers and other things.
Please send us your wildflower reports and photos to share.

  Blue Dicks

Deer Brush
Henderson's Shooting Star  

Purple Nightshade
Redbud Waterfall Buttercup