Posted Saturday, March 18, 2017.
Photo by Stacey Leasca.
These aren’t them. Bigelow’s Monkeyflowers, that is. I think they’re Desert Sunflowers which I didn’t even know existed until I read this story at BuzzFeed News. I didn’t know there were such things as Bigelow’s Monkeyflowers either:
A rare “super bloom” of wildflowers is happening right now in the Southern California desert and its said to be unlike anything seen in the area in nearly 20 years.
The flowers at Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and surrounding deserts have bloomed after an onslaught of rain in recent months, following years of extreme drought in the region.
“Probably close to 6 inches of rain came in the last three months,” Jim Dice, who is the Reserve Manager at the Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center, told BuzzFeed News.
The last super bloom that was “bigger and better than this, but not by much,” occurred back in 1998, according to Dice.
This super bloom is just starting, and flowers will continue to bloom in abundance at least through the month.
Right now, it’s most common to see sand verbenas, dune evening primroses, brown eyed primroses, and desert sunflowers in bloom.
In bloom are also golden poppies, bigelow’s monkeyflowers, phacelias, desert dandelions, and many other flowers.
I want to go out there if only to see if Bigelow’s monkeyflowers are as interesting as their name.
The Anza-Borrego Desert State Park’s website is warning that they’re having a heatwave. It was 77 degrees at 9 this morning their time. It’s advising bringing plenty of water to drink. There’s also a lot of traffic in the park. Everyone is rushing in to see the bloom.
There’s a “wildflower hotline”. I just called it. Doesn’t tell you much. Stick with the website.
If you can’t get out there, Stacey Leasca’s gallery of photos and the accompanying story by Michelle Broder Van Dyke are a pretty good vicarious substitute and there’s no heatwave and you don’t have to worry about finding parking. To see and read them, follow the link to The California Desert Is Experiencing A Rare “Super Bloom” Of Wildflowers After Heavy Rain at BuzzFeed.