Desert Wildflower Updates

Ron Niebrugge California, Photos, Travel 4 Comments

Desert Wildflowers

Imperial Sand Dunes, California.

In a couple weeks, we will be hitting the desert area for a couple of months, and wildflower conditions are sounding better and better thanks to another large storm.  It may not be a huge bloom, but it should definitely be at least average, and probably above average – a big improvement over the last 2 years!

When the first storm hit Anza-Borrego Desert State Park earlier this winter, a ranger told me for a decent wildflower year, they needed a couple more storms.  I just got off the phone with the visitor center, and this past weekend brought another 1.4 inches of rain giving this popular wildflower location 3 good sized storms, and one small for the winter.

The Palm Springs airport has now received 4 good storms this winter with rainfall amounts of 1.35 in November, 1.15 in December and two storms in January – .68 in early January and 1.5 in the recent storm.  While these totals might represent a normal October week here in Seward – this is a lot of rain for this desert area.  The year before they received virtually no rain for the entire year.

The final month of our upcoming trip will be spent near Phoenix, and this area sounds just as promising.  Phoenix received another inch or more in the past storm and official totals are 134% above normal since the beginning of November.  The surrounding mountains received much more, in fact a number of roads have been washed out and a person had to be rescued from the flooding – hard to picture that in Phoenix.  I have seen some TV coverage of the area because of the upcoming Super Bowl, and I was surprised how green the hills look.  This was further confirmed by Christopher Clark who made this comment on an older post here on the blog:

 Much more rain! It has been a soaker here where I live north of Phoenix. Most areas have received over an inch of rain in the past 24 hours and the foothills and mountains around where I live have had two and even three inches or more of rain. It rained about a half inch up here two or three days ago as well. I’m sure that it will be a great season for wildflowers this year. I can’t believe how green the hills are getting…

It looks like we have picked a good year for a desert trip, I’m really excited!  This blog is getting a lot of hits by people searching for desert wildflower conditions so I plan to continue to provide wildflower updates once we hit the road.

Comments 4

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  2. Ron, I admire your photos. And this one is absolutely beautiful. I’ll be spending some time in Joshua Tree NP, Death Valley NP and southeast Arizona in March/April. Any predictions as to wildflowers in these areas? BTW, your Alaskan journals and photos helped me with choices for my 3-month long trip to Alaska this summer. Thank you Ron.

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    Thanks Places! Glad I was able to help with your Alaska trip planning!

    I understand the southern most portion of Joshua Tree already has a fair number of flowers blooming, and plants like lupine that should be blooming soon. It has warmed up down there this weekend, so I think they may take off.

    Death Valley had received moderate rain, there should be some wildflower activity out that way, but it seems like Arizona received more rain than California, it should be even better. I would think places like Organ Pipe should be pretty good this spring.

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