The ubiquitous cabbage white butterfly is as common in coastal southern California as it is in New Zealand. It's a successful creature.
In this garden the many butterflies were laying eggs on, and larvae were feeding on, garden nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus). I've read that nasturtiums independently evolved the same defensive chemistry as Brassica, the usual hosts of this butterfly, making them a suitable host plant despite not being closely related to Brassica.
A woody vine/shrub scrambling along the northern trellis of this garden. Both the sepals and the petals are pink. The flowers close up at night.
The adult I reared from larvae collected from a Malva, or close relative, in the garden.
A pretty parasitic plant growing amongst pines.
This is the closest photo I could get.
Of the species in Heath, F., and Clarke, H. 2004. An introduction to Southern California butterflies, this photo most closely matches the gorgon copper, although it mentions the similar Great Copper which is not illustrated.
An amazing plant along the shore of Lake Hemet.
As well as larvae on the Urtica, I also saw one adult red admiral nearby but didn't get a good photo.
I see more New Zealand Phormium planted in gardens of coastal southern Californian than in Christchurch, New Zealand.
This is the same pretty parasitic plant growing amongst pines as I saw at Lake Fulmor. Note the lack of obvious leaves.
This is the same pretty parasitic plant growing amongst pines as I saw at Lake Fulmor.