Just rode for my first time about half of the Joe Rodota Multi-use trail which connects Sebastopol to Santa Rosa, California. I happened upon it at a nice time I suppose, it was late afternoon/early evening when I started out, on a hot July 12th day. It felt nice to be on a bicycle as always, more aware of the space I travel through.
..What do you know! Cherry trees full of ripe cherries lining the path! Well, some were plums, so lets call them cherry plum trees- and lots of them! Some with green leaves some with red leaves, some with dark red fruit some with yellowish fruits. A major score and one unexpected so all the better. Prunus is my favorite genera of flowering plants.
Besides the cherry plums there is lots of blackberries, and today I had my first ripe blackberry of the season. Himalayan Blackberry, Rubus discolor, of course, not a rare sight by any means but at its best when producing sweet black fruits. I predict it will be a summer of many blackberries.
I made sure to pick fruits that are above me- dont trust the trailside low hanging fruits.
Lots of other cool wildflowers, mostly all non-native. Mustard, Wild Radish, Fennel, Queen Anne’s Lace, Poison Hemlock, Bristly Ox Tongue, Vetch + many more lining the trail. Soap Root flower stalks were blooming too, a nice sight to see and my first of the summer, in the Sierras all of the Chlorogalum sp. have been growing their basal leaves. Also, the soap root flowers only open during the evening and night apparently.
A cool sunflower -
Lots of Oak - Live oaks and some sort of valley oak? I need to figure out which is broadleaved oaks growing out in that area, which is actually the Laguna de Santa Rosa, a large floodplain area where water from surrounding hills flows to and drops sediment, making for a fertile soil.
Willows along the path and creek that the trail runs parallel to. Walnut trees in peoples yards over the path. Lots of grasses growing tall, the bulk of the land is prohibited access for restoration- a good thing. Once you get closer to Santa Rosa vineyards and cattle occupy the lands, and hay fields, which are irrigated and at this evening time of day makes a rainbow reflected.
On my way back I also became acutely aware of a rising 2nd quarter, waxing gibbous moon- nearly full. I was taking my time riding about 10 mph when the limit is 15. Notice the fog to the south in this photo- San Francisco Bay. Sunny in Sonoma County!
I am very impressed by that trail! Bicycle travel really is the most pleasant activity you can do on a summer evening like this, especially when there are so many fresh fruits lining the path to taste.