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Coastal Sage Scrub

Black sage - Salvia melliferaCoastal sage scrub

Coastal sage scrub is home to the federally threatened coastal California gnatcatcher. Coastal sage scrub types within Carlsbad include maritime succulent scrub, Diegan coastal sage scrub, and coastal sage scrub-chaparral scrub, and all three are considered sensitive habitats.

Maritime succulent scrub

Maritime succulent scrub includes a variety of succulents, such as fish-hook cactus, coast cholla, shore cactus, california desert thorn, cliff-spurge, bladder-pod, and several species of dudleya, mixed with typical Deigan coastal sage scrub species.

Diegan coastal sage scrub

Diegan coastal sage scrub is a drought-deciduous community comprised of aromatic shrubs with a diverse understory of annual and perennial forbs and grasses. This habitat occurs primarily on dry south-facing slopes or hillsides or on clay-rich soils adjacent to chaparral. Characteristic plant species include California sagebrush, California buckwheat, black sage, white sage, lemonadeberry, laurel sumac, and purple needlegrass. It also supports a variety of sensitive plants such as California adolphia and Del Mar mesa sand-aster. In Carlsbad the largest remaining tracts of Diegan coastal sage scrub are found in the Calavera Hills area, southeast of Agua Hedionda Lagoon, and near Rancho Santa Fe Road.

Coastal sage scrub-chaparral scrub

Coastal sage scrub-chaparral scrub is a transitional community between coastal sage scrub and chaparral types. Within the context of the MHCP, it is categorized as a sub-type of coastal sage scrub and is considered to be a sensitive habitat.