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California Native Plant Society

Santa Clara Valley Chapter

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Flora of the San Joaquin Desert 
Wednesday, April 21, 2021 07:30pm

Located in the southern Central Valley, the San Joaquin Desert is the smallest, least recognized and most imperiled true desert in North America, with less than 40% of its original area remaining. The desert was not formally described until 1995 and didn’t gain recognition by the scientific community until 2011. The San Joaquin Desert is floristically distinct with 37 near-endemic and 40 strict- endemic plant species. Nearly half of the species are imperiled and listed as endangered, threatened, rare or watch status.

This presentation will delve into why it took so long for the San Joaquin to be recognized as a desert, how it is both climatically and floristically similar to the Mojave Desert and what we can do to conserve what little of it remains.

Ryan O’Dell has been a Natural Resource Specialist with the BLM Central Coast Field Office for 14 years. His primary duties include rare plant survey and endangered plant species monitoring and recovery in the central Inner South Coast Ranges and San Joaquin Desert.

How to attend: Most of our lectures take place Wednesday evening at 7:30pm. Our talks are live- streamed simultaneously to Zoom and YouTube. To view talks, watch our YouTube channel at (no registration needed) or join on Zoom by registering at the Zoom link provided in each lecture’s description. Recordings of past talks can also be viewed on our YouTube channel.

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Upcoming Events

Fri Sep 29 @ 9:00AM - 12:00PM
Friday Edgewood Restoration
Sat Sep 30 @ 8:00AM -
Lake Cunningham Native Garden
Fri Oct 06 @ 9:00AM - 12:00PM
Friday Edgewood Restoration
Sat Oct 07 @ 8:00AM -
Lake Cunningham Native Garden
Tue Oct 10 @ 7:00PM - 08:30PM
Conservation Committee
Fri Oct 13 @ 9:00AM - 12:00PM
Friday Edgewood Restoration
Sat Oct 14 @ 8:00AM -
Lake Cunningham Native Garden
Sat Oct 14 @ 1:00PM - 02:30PM
Master Gardeners Talk: Local California Natives for Your Garden, a talk by Carol Peck
Thu Oct 19 @ 7:00PM -
CNPS SCV Board Meeting
Fri Oct 20 @ 9:00AM - 12:00PM
Friday Edgewood Restoration