Chapter

Pre-Hispanic Herbaceous Vegetation

Richard A. Minnich

in California's Fading Wildflowers

Published by University of California Press

Published in print June 2008 | ISBN: 9780520253537
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520934337 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520253537.003.0002
Pre-Hispanic Herbaceous Vegetation

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Perhaps the greatest asset of the Spanish land expeditions is their remarkable geographic resolution. Vegetation was described almost daily, and landmarks or place names permit accurate mapping of the expeditions. The accounts highlight the vast extent of pasture in California, but the Spanish explorers also made clear that the quality of potential grazing lands changed with the seasons and from the coast to the interior. This chapter's epigraph by Anza illustrates another basic observation in Spanish texts: that wildflower fields were seen wherever the expeditions traversed California in the vernal season.

Keywords: Spanish land expeditions; vegetation; California; pasture; Spanish explorers; wildflower fields

Chapter.  22808 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry

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