by Avis Licht – Rare and endangered. What does this mean for this little plant and for this great planet, Earth?
I photographed this flower a few days ago on the hill behind my house, in county open space. My neighbor noticed it and asked me to identify it. What a treat. In the case of this California wild flower, Arabis blepharopylla, it means that there are very few of them and they have a limited distribution. The California Native Plant Society has a ranking system for rare and endangered plants. The levels go from 1 – considered extinct, to 4 – uncommon and status should be monitored. This plant is rated 4, uncommon, but not about to go extinct.
We care about even small, unimpressive plants and animals because they are part of the intricate web of life. All life has evolved through interactions with its environment. Everything that lives, plants, animals and humans all must eat to live and nourish each other. Let’s resolve to do this consciously.
Urban and suburban development has destroyed large areas of wildlands. By planting native plants in your yard you can create wildland corridors that support birds and allows beneficial pollinators to flourish. We can improve what we’ve damaged by native plant restoration. Native plants belong in your garden as well as the wilds. Find out what grows in your neighborhood.
The rare and endangered flower is a reflection of the much bigger issue – the rare and endangered earth.
How would you rank the status of Earth on this 1 to 4 ranking system? 1 is extinct.Well, we’re not extinct yet, so that brings us to 2 – exceedingly rare and uncommon. Hard to argue with that.
With only one earth and billions of humans trying to live well, no one is exempt from looking at the choices they make in their life. Whether you take a small step or a running leap toward a sustainable life, it’s still your choice. Plant a fruit tree today.
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