Calflora Logo information on wild California plants for conservation, education, and appreciation.  

About Calflora











The Calflora Database is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing information about California plant biodiversity for use in Education, Research and Conservation.  Calflora is structured as a digital library to fulfill the following objectives:

  1. to serve as a repository for information on California wild plants in electronic formats from diverse sources, including public agencies, academic institutions, private organizations, and individuals.
  2. to provide this information in readily usable, electronic formats for scientific, conservation, and educational purposes.
  3. to serve public information needs related to scientific study, land management, environmental analysis, education, and appreciation of California plant life.
  4. to coordinate and integrate efforts towards these objectives undertaken by scientists, public agencies, private organizations, and members of the public.

Calflora was conceived as a collaborative research project to collect and re-distribute information about California's wild plants, including habitat descriptions, photographs, observations, nomenclature, and distribution maps.  The database provides:

  • comprehensive habitat and distribution information for wild plants -- over 10,000 native and introduced species
  • 800,000 plant location observations
  • information on over 30,000 relationships between old and new plant names, according to several authorities
  • access to hundreds of thousands of photographs of California plants in the CalPhotos database (provided in collaboration with Biodiversity Sciences Technology at UC Berkeley)
  • online tools that help users find, display, and download the information they need

Calflora serves a large and increasing number of users, including researchers, scientists, students, environmental consultants, landscapers, and amateur enthusiasts.

Calflora offers resources for an informed, timely approach to biodiversity protection. Through Calflora, scientists, citizens, and policymakers have quick and easy access to data they need for analyzing species distributions, modeling spread of invasive species, or identifying consequences of habitat loss.  Furthermore, Calflora provides a mechanism for citizens to participate directly in building the information resources they need, and gives all users an opportunity to learn about the beauty and diversity of California plant life.

Calflora relies on contributors for the information it provides. As you use the site, please remember the thousands of individuals and institutions whose work is reflected here.



Calflora foresees emerging and growing needs for information related to locally focused planning, education, and conservation.  The decades ahead will be a period of rapid change for California wild communities: increasing incidence of invasive species and pathogens, climate change, environmental changes associated with human population growth; all mean rapid changes in species distributions and conservation status.

Calflora will serve the need for rapid information exchange occasioned by this dynamic picture. We want to put major effort into addressing these requirements while maintaining our current strength as a library for California plant information provided by major institutional collaborators. Calflora's user community represents a broad range of expertise and has a large capacity for volunteer involvement. We hope to increase the role of volunteers in all aspects of development.

Habitat Planning, Restoration and Monitoring

We will be focusing efforts on further developing tools to facilitate the participation of government agencies, environmental organizations and citizen in building data resources that are relevant to habitat restoration and conservation planning. We will refine existing and develop new online tools that allow users to submit data and images, review and annotate information, and use Calflora's online infrastructure for data exchange within and among local working groups. Calflora volunteers have tremendous interest in developing new data resources for restorationists and native plant gardeners. Expanding Calflora applications in this area will coordinate well with improving resources and tools for locally focused planning applications. Habitat Conservation Plans and Natural Community Conservation Plans, county planning, urban creeks councils, Weed Management Areas, watershed councils, bioregional planning groups are examples of these kinds of efforts and user communities.

Education and Citizen Involvement

Active participation is key to effective teaching both inside and outside the classroom. In collaboration with partners, we will be developing new interfaces that bring Calflora data and images into K-12 science curricula and make good use of Calflora's data submission capacity to provide students with opportunities to actively engage with the broader world. Parallel efforts with conservation partners will increase Calflora's role in 'citizen science' programs by developing interfaces directed at providing education and involvement opportunities for adult amateurs.

Maintain and Improve Calflora's Online Library

We will increase capacity so we can expand our network of data collaborators, improve our database and interface functionality, and make sure that our services keep in step with the needs of our established user communities in science, land management, environmental analysis, and conservation. We will develop online tools for expert volunteer involvement in data evaluation, annotation, and specialized data development. We will make data available to researchers in a variety of formats.


Calflora  -  1700 Shattuck Av #198, Berkeley, CA 94709  -  510 883-3148  -  CONTACT