Southern California Wildflower Reports

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Wildflower and Plant Descriptions with Photos

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2016 Southern California Wildflower Reports

Feb 5, 2016 DUSA Reports: We have had the rain in southern California, and the weather is warming up, the wildflowers should be good this year.

Jan 24, 2016 Volunteer Researcher Mary Wilson with Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve Reports: Rain on October 2015 brought about germination of poppies, filaree, fiddleneck and grasses. Since then there have been nights of freezing temperatures and on December 22, 2015 the winds reached 76 mph at the reserve. One has to marvel at the resiliency of the plants that survive in our desert.

There are filaree plants and some are starting to bloom. Fiddleneck leaves are up to 4 inches. Grasses are up to 2 to 4 inches. There are lupine plants with leaves up to 3 inches. Poppies that germinated after the October rain are looking healthy, forming their rosettes and measure 1 to 3 inches across. There was rain at the beginning of January and I did find just a few poppy cots. Even though it has been over 10 days for poppy cot germination, with the wind and freezing temperatures it may be too soon for them to have emerged. The few I found were less than ¼-inch tall. Observations: Spotted a northern harrier, flocks of sparrows, mountain blue birds, road runner and cottontails.

Jan 6, 2016 DUSA Reports: Rain is falling in parts of southern California, could be a good year for flowers.

 

 

 

2015 Southern California Wildflower Reports

Oct 22, 2015 Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve Reports: The recent rainstorms brought almost 2 1/2 inches of rain to the Poppy Reserve! However, most of the rain from major cloudbursts quickly runs off, so it's not as effective as when it's spread over periodic storms that give the water a chance to soak in. Regardless, the hills are greening up, with a few little poppy plants just starting to sprout!

Oct 11, 2015 Mary at the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve Reports: The rain from October does not seem to have germinated any new tumbleweeds or poppies. The buckwheat that has clusters of white flowers growing up the stem is in bloom. Spurge is starting to turn the red color. The Rubber Rabbitbrush still has the flower buds and some are starting to bloom. The Ragweed is starting to produce the male flowers. The Turkey Mullein is going to seed and some of the plants are starting to have the leaves turn the ivory color. Jimson weed still has some blossoms and a few blooms. California Aster has produced its seed. The Hairy Aster is in bloom. Vinegar Weed has bloomed and is going to seed.

Cereal Rye - Some plants did come up this year but they had the same problem growing as did the rest of the plants at the reserve. They did not get as tall as usual and had a short growing season.

Tumbleweed range from 3-inches to 27-inches in height and about 12-inches to 20-inches across. Found a few that were only about ¾-inch. There are a few tumbleweeds that have the stems turning red and are starting to produce flowers. Not observing the tumbleweeds that can grow up to 3-feet or more across this year and reports show they require temperatures between 28 and 110 degrees Fahrenheit. The small size of the plants, although a lot of them, and if winter temperatures dip below 28 degrees they could have a small seed bank this year.

Poppy Reserve Weather Station Rainfall totals: 09-30-15 .02 inches, 10/04/15 .01 inches and 10/05/15 .05 inches.
The L.A. Times Science Section reports: scientists estimate that the amount of snow in the Sierra Nevada is the lowest in more than 500 years. California’s four-year drought could reduce the amount of snow blanketing California mountains, and with warm temperatures, even if we get rain it will not freeze and the water will just be going to the ocean.

The National Weather Service states, “There is an approximately 95% chance that El Nino will continue through Northern Hemisphere winter 2015-16, gradually weakening through spring 2016.” Weather predictions are great but we will just have to wait and see what Mother Nature has in store for us. Hopefully, enough rain for a great wildflower season.

June 8, 2015 Susan Reports: Photos were taken Saturday June 6, 2015 at Vazquez Rocks - Agua Dulce, CA.




June 3, 2015 Jim Reports: The rain in the last few weeks has restarted some wildflowers along the backcounty roads in San Diego county.



April 23, 2015 Morgan Reports: For those willing to venture out into the San Rafael wilderness, the shady sections of lower Manzana trail below Nira campground have a nice selection of small wild flowers. Lots of hummingbird sage, a few lily’s, monkeyflower,, dudleya and various others that are still in bloom.




April 17, 2015 Jim Reports: Taken at Tuttle Creek Calif. 4-15-15


April 13, 2015 Glen Reports: Found these in Short Canyon near Ridgecrest CA. on April 9th.


 

 

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When will the desert wildflowers bloom?
We start our report in January, plan your visit to coincide with the peak of the bloom - keep up to date with DesertUSA's Wildflower Reports. Be sure to bookmark this page for weekly updates.

We'd like to see your pictures too. E-mail your digital photos and reports to Jim@desertusa.com. Use Wildflower Report as the subject of your e-mail. Let us know where you took the photo and the date. We will post them on our wildflower reports. Thanks for your support and photos.

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