The ceonothus is in bloom. It's a short window each year, when the hillsides around here are covered in flowering purple bushes; some folks call it wild lilac, which it technically isn't, but it most definitely is beautiful. So on Sunday we went out on a three-hour hike and picnic to enjoy the ceonothus (and the cool weather!) while we could.
See all those lighter patches? Purple ceonothus.
They were swarming with bees; you could hear the buzzing from feet away around each bush.
Of course, this rare moment of green and bloom comes with its darker side.
Yes, that would be our friend the poison oak. It was everywhere.
My three girls.
We stopped to admire flowers along the way.
Including these wild sweet peas. And some monkeyflowers.
We finally found a perfect spot for a picnic (rock to sit on = no poison oak, and no ticks).
Tilly thought it was about time.
After a lovely lunch, we headed home. There were more flowers.
A lot more poison oak.
And, of course, my favorite: live oaks.
I think we all would gladly have kept going.
So there you go, a little green for St. Patrick's Day. And a little Irish dance to go with it.