Field Trip To Ione Basin--October 22, 2002

Western Foothills Of The Sierra Nevada

Amador County, California

Here is a look at the two dominant varieties of manzanita in the Ione Basin, western foothills of the Sierra Nevada, Amador County, California--as observed in the vicinity of Lygodium Gulch, one of the most significant fossil leaf localities in all of California. The darker-green, low-lying shrubbery belongs to the rare and protected Ione manzanita, Arctostaphylos myrtifolia, which grows in the wild nowhere else on Earth, except on the harsh, acidic, highly mineralized soils developed in the Middle Eocene Ione Formation of the Ione Basin. The taller, paler, green-colored foliage is the Sticky white-leaf manzanita Arctostaphylos viscida. Image snapped on October 22, 2002.

Please note: All fossil localities in the Ione Formation of Amador County, California, presently occur on private property; explicit permission from the land owners must be secured before collecting fossils there.

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