News & Articles

Desert Wildflower Report-3-13-2017, Ludlow & Cady Mountains

Hairy Desert Sunflower looking cheerful near Ludlow
Gorgeous Lilac Sunbonnet hiding between rocks at the Cady Mountains
Rock Daisy cuter than a button near Ludlow

The area north of the Cady Mountains near Ludlow had millions of seedlings that were coloring the landscape. Most prominent in the area was Winged Combseed and Bearded Cryptantha, and Brittle Spineflower and Booth's Primrose were days from bursting into bloom. The wonderful and beautiful Lilac Sunbonnet was in bloom, and other bright color was provided by Hairy Desert Sunflower, Rock Daisy, Desert Chicory and Coville's Poppies. There was a great number of the lovely Broad Leaved Gilia seedlings, but only a few in bloom.

Desert Wildflower Report-3-12-2017 Rainbow Basin Natural Area

Desert Paintbrush at Owl Canyon
Notch Leaved Phacelia at Rainbow Basin Natural Area
Rabbitthorn at Owl Canyon

Rainbow Basin Natural Area and Owl Canyon had some nice displays of Fremont Phacelia and Notch Leaved Phacelia. A few bright red Desert Paintbrush individuals were peeking out from the scrub, and shrubs were just beginning to bud or bloom. It was still early, and should be looking nice in a few weeks. Plenty of green seedlings in the washes and on the hillsides.

Desert Wildflower Report-3-11-2017 Kramer Junction & Barstow

Crowned Muilla near Kramer Junction
Layne's Milkvetch near Kramer Junction
Broad Leaved Gilia north of Barstow

The sandy flats around Kramer Junction revealed a few interesting species: the rare plant Crowned Muilla was scattered about as wells as one specimen of Layne's Milkvetch. Both were healthy and beautiful.

Desert Wildflower Report-3-11-2017 Red Rock Canyon State Park

Red Maids in bloom at Red Rock Canyon State Park
Goldfields at Red Rock Canyon State Park
Desert-Hyacinth at Red Rock Canyon State Park

Red Rock Canyon State Park is beginning to burst into color. The south end as you approach from SR 14 is displaying swaths of yellow covering the hillsides, mostly from California Goldfields. Checker Fiddleneck is blooming in the canyon, as well as Broad-Leaved Gilia. Desert Hyacinth is beginning to bloom and there are seedlings of those plants just about everywhere. Yellow Peppergrass is providing color on sandy flats. Dwarf Cottonrose seedlings are scattered about the canyon.

Desert Wildflower Report-2-25-2017 Box Canyon & Southern Joshua Tree

Arizona Lupine growing tall in Box Canyon
Ghost Flower crowds on a hillside in the Mecca Hills
Notch Leaved Phacelia blooming in Box Canyon

Box Canyon Rd. in the Mecca Hills, like Anza-Borrego, is a reliable spot to find wildflowers in the springtime. This area receives substantial runoff from southern Joshua Tree to the north. The mud hills provide shade for plants that grow in its crevices, while others grow in the deep sand and full sun. Many Arizona Lupine specimens were gigantic--3 ft. tall--possibly more in some cases, and covered the embankments along the side of the road. The small washes opening into the canyon had many surprises, including Ghost Flower and the rare Mecca Aster.

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