Arctostaphylos auriculata, or the Mt. Diablo Manzanita, is a low, evergreen shrub that can only be found in the Mt. Diablo area (Contra Costa County) where other endemic species can be found including the Mt. Diablo sunflower (Helianthelia castanea) and Mt. Diablo fairy-lantern (Calochortus pulchellus). It is in this region where A. auriculata thrives in lower montane chaparral. Characteristic of manzanitas, theyre woody shrubs that sprout pink, hanging, bell-shaped blooms between January and March, eventually maturing into apple-shaped fruit. There are currently Imperiled with about 19 known occurrences as of 2005. This species is restricted to Mt. Diablo mainly because of its preferences for sandstone but other factors include off-trail use, fire suppression, brush clearing, and grazing.
Photo Credit: ©2016 John Doyen
Photo Credit: ©2006 Steve Matson
Photo Credit: ©2016 Neal Kramer
Photo Credit: ©2015 John Doyen
Mt. Diablo, the sole occurrence of A. auriculata, consists mainly of chaparral flora and sandstone.
A. auriculata shares beneficial relationships with various species of pollinating insects and hummingbirds.
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