Photo Quest February: Shrublands

Did you know that you live in a biodiversity hot spot? In fact, all of California is, but San Diego County has more biodiversity than any other county in North America (source: SDSU). Wow! The most dominant vegetation form are shrublands, known as chaparral and sagebrush, stretching all the way from the coast to the Laguna crest, and into the semi-arid high desert.

With the arrival of winter rains, the shrublands at lower elevations are already putting on an impressive show of spring festivities, in the form of fresh green sprouting, wildflowers popping up at the side of trails, and regrowth on bushes and shrubs (that appeared dead and desiccated just a few months ago).To celebrate the biodiversity of San Diego County, the native plants and spring together, and to (hopefully) renew everyone’s connection with the flora of this place we call home, the theme for our monthly photo quest in March is


How you show them is completely up to you. Up close in a macro of a wildflower or the inflorescence of a shrub in bloom? Cool. A native shrub in bloom, perhaps even in your backyard? Terrific! Wildflowers popping up along a trail? Awesome. The larger view of a chaparral hillside with all kinds of hardy shrubs in bloom? Beautiful! Whether it’s chaparral-covered hillsides, sagebrush-dotted slopes or close-ups of wildflowers: that’s what we’d like to see.

And yes, you’ll have to dive in a little bit to learn what our natives are. 😉


  • Make a photo of our shrublands
    Hint: read more about chaparral and sage scrub on Wikipedia
    (don’t send photos of desert wildflowers etc.)
  • Your photo must be made in February 2019
  • Submit one single photo for the quest
  • Members will receive a submission link (Dropbox file request) via email
  • Deadline February 28th, 2019
  • Color, black & white, DSLR, mirrorless, phone… doesn’t matter.
  • JPEG files, sRGB color space
  • Please give your submission a descriptive filename (you do not need to add your name; it will be added automatically when you submit them via Dropbox file request)
  • Add Title & Caption in the IPTC tags, if possible


We suggest: take a hike! Where? Mission Trails Regional Park; Torrey Pines (State Reserve and Extension); San Dieguito River Park (along the Coast to Crest Trail, especially Del Dios, Lake Hodges, San Pasqual Valley); Black Mountain Open Space Park; Daley Ranch, Escondido; Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve; Manchester Preserve, Encinitas; Hellhole Canyon Preserve, Valley Center; The slopes around Lake Miramar & Lake Poway; Iron Mountain; Mount Woodson; …and so many more…

Questions? Feel free to ask in our Facebook group. Have fun exploring and photographing, and we’re looking forward to seeing your photos.

Example Photos

Just to give you an idea what to look for and what you can find… (all of the photos were made in previous years in the month of February).



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