There's a boardwalk trail in the valley below, part of a wetlands and nature preservation area surrounded by warehouses and light industrial businesses. When I was growing up here, this valley was all agriculture, full of truck farms and nurseries, horse farms and dairies. There was no freeway, no warehouses, only one narrow road up each side of the valley. The Green River winds its way through the valley, from side to side, and along its entire length. It's beautiful, and it also used to flood. So few people lived there, and those decades of flooding created the most amazing rich soil for growing.

This remained the status quo until a flood control dam was built up in the foothills to control the flooding. And that was the death knell for agriculture in the valley. Today there are still a few truck farms, some wonderful farm stands, and one Thoroughbred horse farm, but there

The last few years, the county has been working to preserve what's left of the open space. The Springbrook Creek trail is one of these areas. We took a walk there today, on the first cloudy and cool day we've had for a while. And to my delight, the shrubs that line the walkway were covered with tiny lavender flowers.

Before we walked back to the car, DW looked them up on the internet. I was surprised that these beautiful flowers are in the belladona family, related to petunias, potatoes, garden tomatoes, flowering tobacco, and deadly nightshade.

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