Saturday, April 11, 2015

Island Manzanita: Flower and Apple

Arctostaphylos insularis
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Arctostaphylos
Species: A. insularis

Island manzanita is endemic to Santa Cruz Island of Channel Islands of California.
In late December of 2014, I was commissioned to do 2 series of pen and ink drawings of native plants on Channel Islands. During the 2 month span of the first project, the island manzanita trees in the Channel Islands Native Garden changed a few phases already: budding, flowering, bearing apples. The young apples have this refreshing green that is hard to replicate. The bell shape flowers are white under a coat of peachy pink hue. It was a delight to just look at the rich colors shown on such a little branch.

A closeup of the flowers and apples:

Manzanita was widely used by Chumash Indians. In a very interesting book Living Wild written by Alicia Funk and Karin Kaufman, the two ladies introduce a few ways to enjoy manzanita: manzanita blossom jelly, manzanita crackers, manzanita muffins...etc. I haven't had a chance to try the recipes, but it's definitely on my bucket list to experiment in a near future!

Alicia Funk's The Living Wild Project website:
You can find their book Living Wild online or try with your local botanic garden. I found my copy at the gift shop of Santa Barbara Botanic Garden.

About this artwork:
Original size: 4"x 6"
Paper: Fabriano Hot Press 140 Lb
Colored pencils: Faber-Castell and Caran d'Ache

May The Bb Power Be With You,

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