Cottonwood Visitor’s Center
Joshua Tree National Park
California Desert Wildflowers
April 9th, 2012
If you enter the Joshua Tree National Park from the south entrance off of the I-10 heading towards the Cottonwood Visitor’s Center, there is a nice stretch of desert on the right side of the road that usually has good wildflower displays.
Every year I visit this area in April to see what is blooming. I parked along the side of the road and walked through fields of chia towards the hills. It is along the rocky slopes that you will find the beavertail cactus. They were in bloom and I found a few that were a short climb up from the wash.
The ocotillo were blooming and the red tips stood out in the desert landscape. An abundance of red, orange and white spotted the wash in clusters. The apricot globe mallow was in full bloom and when viewed next to a blooming chuparosa it was an explosion of color. The silvery-white petals of the Sand Blazing Star glistened in the sunlight and made a nice contrast to the other blooming plants.
There were a few barrel cactus in full bloom and other native plants. View the gallery below to see a variety of what you will encounter if you go. The season is just peaking in this area, so I suggest that you go within the next 5 days to see the best wildflower displays.