axle canyonEmory Oaks in Axle Canyon. (Photo courtesy of Hanna Blood)The Gila Native Plant Society continues its summer program of field trips with visit to the Burro Mountains on Sunday, August 18, 2019. Our field trip leader, Hanna Blood, describes the outing: 

“We’ll head to Axle Canyon Preserve in the Big Burros, to the confluence of Axle and Mulberry canyons located on an 83-acre in-holding in the Gila National Forest. Axle Canyon Preserve is a special place well cared for by its owners.

stachys coccineaScarlet Hedge Nettle (Stachys coccinea) (Photo courtesy of the Dale A. Zimmerman Herbarium, WNMU)It will be a moderate/easy hike in sandy, open washes. Our drive will be 45 minutes each way: HWY 180 north from Silver City, Mangas Valley Road, Redrock Road, Axle Canyon Road. The dirt road is hard and fairly smooth, with some washboards and a few sandy places along the way. In the canyons, huge black cherry trees, grand Emory oaks and alligator junipers provide shade to white honeysuckle, canyon grapes, and other wonderful understory surprises. Herbaceous perennials are coming back since a couple of good monsoon rains drenched the Burros. Come and join me for a plant wander.”

For those who are new to the native plants of our area, or just new to botany, during the outing Don Graves will provide an introduction to some of the basic aspects of plant identification. 

Meet at 8 a.m. in the south parking lot of the WNMU Fine Arts Center Theatre for carpooling. All are welcome; GNPS field trips are free and open to the public. Be sure to wear a hat and sturdy shoes, bring plenty of water and perhaps a snack. Please be aware, during the summer months the field trip destination may have to be changed owing to washed-out roads. For further information check or website at or contact

The Gila Native Plant Society conducts field trips on the third Sunday of each month from April through September. Each field trip will be to a different location, in order to explore the diversity of our native plants. Field trips are free and open to the public. 

Gila Native Plant Society is committed to promoting education, research and appreciation of the native flora of the Southwest, encouraging the preservation of rare and endangered plant species and supporting the use of suitable native plants in landscaping. For information on programs, publications and membership, please visit

Attachments:  Photo of Emory Oaks in Axle Canyon 

Photo courtesy of Hanna Blood

Photo of the Scarlet Hedge Nettle (Stachys coccinea)

Photo courtesy of the Dale A. Zimmerman Herbarium, WNMU