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Jepson Field Book volume 66 page 54 | University and Jepson Herbaria Archives, University of California, Berkeley

Jepson Field Book volume 66 page 54
December in the Hills To come back to ones own land after an absence from midsummer is to find a great change. All the orchard trees are cheerless and bare _ not one retains a leaf. The hills, too, look a bit gaunt or denuded. The hollows in the Araquipa Hills are filled with the whitish skeletons of the Buckeyes. The Blue Oaks stand grayish and austere, the few Valley Oaks much like them. An occasional Interior Live Oak makes a dark spot of green against the dull background of the hill slope. After all there is a certain interest in a winters walk to the top of the ridge. The views are brilliant on a clear day. The Sierran snows show their broadest fields; the Marysville Buttes lift their most    ::::::::: ragged outlines; and all the near-lying farm country presents a severe and sober outline far away from summer softness. _ Jan. 8, 1932. The one touch of charm finds its highest note in the mistletoe on the Buckeye _ the light yellow leaves and pearl-like berries in their fine clusters. The vineyard at home. In the home vineyard my interest was greater and deeper than in the orchard, the fig rows, the walnut grove, the wheat fields, the pasture lot. I luxuriated in it during the long grape season. It was many many years later that I saw grapevines in the deserts and I did not realize as a lad that our Vitis vinifera grapes all came from Old World deserts. The grape belongs to hot climates! In our valley there is, along streams in the canyons, a native grape _ but it does not extend out into the valley _ nor grow along the valley streams. Its fruit is small and almost too acid to eat at all _ but the berries make a marvelously fine jelly.
University and Jepson Herbaria Archives, University of California, Berkeley
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