Did you know that Napa is home to rare and special status species of wildflowers? Professional botanist Jake Ruygt has now documented over 220 native plant species in just 60 acres of prairie on the Land Trust’s Missimer Snell Wildflower Preserve. These include several rare species that are found only on serpentine soils in our area and nowhere else on the planet! Our Land Trust stewardship team continues ongoing efforts to restore this important Preserve.  This spring’s outstanding wildflower displays provide yet another reminder of why this work is well worth the effort!

The Preserve’s serpentine plant communities have long been regarded as a botanical gem of Napa County and the Bay Region, but they had been highly degraded by barbed goatgrass and other invasive species before the restoration began. The ongoing restoration, which has included several prescribed burns, has dramatically reduced the density of invasive species and the prairie is once again dominated by stunning native wildflowers as shown in the image here: Fence line comparison where the left area has not been restored and is dominated by barbed goatgrass and the right area within the restoration area is dominated by native wildflowers including Annual Mountain Agoseris, Ithuriel’s Spear and native clover species.

Because this is an active restoration area and home to several rare and special status species, access is by permission only and through our guided field trip program. Please visit our hikes page for more information.