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Note: Spring is one of the most beautiful times of the year in the desert, but it can also be a time for caution. Rattlesnakes lie dormant during the cold fall and winter months and awaken from hibernation in the warm months of March and April. Another reason to stay on the trails. More...

2018 Southern California Wildflower Reports

Oct 14, 2018 DesertUSA reports: Riverside and San Diego county received rain on Friday and Saturday

June 18, 2018 DUSA reports: Wildflowers are in bloom around the Mammoth Lakes in central California.

May 25, 2018 Ashley reports: Not quite the desert, but from La Tuna Canyon Park in Los Angeles: Fire-followers are out in full force following the La Tuna Fire of September 2017 and the recent April/May rains. Some of the showiest displays of Large-flowered phacelia, Elegant clarkia, morning glory and Sticky monkeyflower I've seen, along with other species of phacelia, phlox, buckwheat, black sage, eucrypta etc. (and nonnative mustards). I had 20-25 species of wildflowers in large numbers along a one mile stretch of the Hostetter fire road. Other fire-followers included singing Lazuli buntings. Pictures from 5/23/18, a small selection of what is on display.

May 15, 2018 Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve reports: Beavertail cactus now in full bloom.

May 11, 2018 Ashley reports: BLM's Scenic Byway, which goes between HWY178 and the summit of Ninemile Canyon, is currently having a large display in the burn areas from the 2016 Chimney Fire.  The first two pictures are from Ninemile Canyon which is also still blooming strong and the others from the Byway.  The Road is doable with 2WD and good tires. Big display of Coreopsis, Gilia's, White Tidy Tips, Grape Soda Lupine and Phacelia's and all at road level.  I would suggest diving the route from North to South for the best views.

May 5, 2018 Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve reports: As of April 2nd, the hills are mostly green with different varieties of wildflowers scattered around the reserve. There are a few scattered poppies and "belly flowers" such as gold fields, filaree, slender keel fruit, red maids, and popcorn flowers growing alongside the Poppy Trail South Loop and on the Tehachapi Vista Point.

May 2, 2018 Kathy reports: Photos taken at Triunfo Creek Park, Pentachaeta Trail in Westlake Village California, owned by the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, spring is ending quickly.  Although there are still areas with wonderful wildflower displays.  Peaking now are Catalina Mariposa Lily, Purple Chinese Houses, Caterpillar Phacelia, Silver Puffs, Yellow Yarrow, Globe Lilly, Fiesta Flower, Wooly Blue Curls, Speckled Clarkia, Purple Nightshade, Yellow Chenactis, Bigelow Coreopsis, Wild Hyacinth, Black Sage, Checkered Bloom, Purple Clarkia.

May 1, 2018 June reports: April 24, 2018. Hungry Valley Off Highway Vehicle Area (near Gorman,California) seems an unlikely place for wildflowers  but I found abundant California Poppies, Scarlet Buglers, Bladder Pods, and more there this week.

April 27, 2018 Keung reports: Taken 4/22/2018 - Tejon Ranch at Tejon Pass or Fort Tejon State Historic Park.

The one above is from 4/22/2018 - Gorman Hills viewed from Ralphs Ranch Road Gorman, CA

The above 3 photos taken at Munz Ranch Road and Lake Elizabeth on 4/22/2018

April 24, 2018 Ashley reports: In the area around Glenville, Woody and Granite, Ca access via SR155.  There are wonderful displays of Poppies, Cream Puffs, Fiddlenecks, Clarkia, Blue Dicks, Baby Blue Eyes and Forget-me-nots to name a few.

Photos taken at Walkers Pass along HWY178, W of SR14. Hillside is covered in Coreopsis, along with other flowers and a bright patch of Desert Peach blooming in the foreground.  Easily accessible as the PCT goes right thru the patch.

April 23, 2018 Kathleen reports: April 20th - from Highway 14 along Jawbone Canyon Road into Kelso Valley. Coreopsis, phacelia, desert dandelion, white tidy tips, luxurious bush lupine, tiny birds-eye gilia, goldfields and baby blue eyes.

April 20, 2018 Morgan reports: Figueroa Mountain Road, view of Grass Mountain on Saturday, April 14.  There’s a dusting of orange poppies in the distance. Along the road there’s a fair amount of shooting stars, blue dicks and a handful of poppies. Nothing is blooming on the side of the road just past the fire station though. 


April 17, 2018 Ashley reports: Kelso Valley is blooming very nicely with large patches of Fremont Phacelia, Goldfields, Coreopsis, Lupines, Blazing Stars, Golden Gilia, and as pictured Pygmy Poppies, Androsace and Kelso Creek Monkeyflowers.

Kernville has some wonderful California Poppies blooming, and along Mountain Highway 99 from Kernville to South Creek Falls there are some excellent displays, all accessible beside the road.

Tobias Creek Trail, Hang a left after crossing the bridge behind McNally's along Mountain Highway 99.  Great display of Owls Clover, Harlequin Lupine, Foothill Poppies, Birds Eye Gilia and Phacelia, others include Cream Puffs, Delphiniums, Death Lilly's, and Goldfields.

April 13, 2018 Paul reports: I was up in Ridgecrest on April 8+9 and can confirm Rachel's Facebook note in a little more detail. Red Rock Canyon doesn't have a lot going on at all, but from the upper end of hwy 14 north of Jawbone it gets much better and continues all the way up and past the junction of 14 and 395. There's plenty of desert dandelion, goldfield, sandblossoms, mojave pincushion and various phacelia species. Going into Owens Valley I haven't driven further north than the Fossil Falls exit.

The Fossil Falls hiking trail itself doesn't have that many flowers, but the valley and foothills just east of the red cinder cone and quarry are very nice. In addition to the species mentioned above, thistle sage stalks are just beginning to open and look like they will put on a really good showing in the coming weekends. There are also good scatterings of purple owl's clover in between the dominant species from the sunflower family, and the occasional black/purple morph of mojave lomatium shows up in the sandy washes.

The Sierra flowers photo is from the side of the 395 just west of the Bradys gas station, the other two are from the area east of the red cinder cone at Fossil Falls.

Sierra flowers


April 13, 2018 Larry reports: Photos were taken in the Pioneertown Mountain Reserve on April 10, 2018. The oak are in full bloom and producing wonderful perfume. Blue bells were profuse in the wetter areas. There were some blooms of the desert sage. Yucca and Joshua trees are starting to produce blooms. Some of the mallow was blooming and looks like it will be spectacular in a few more days with lots of buds pending.

April 11, 2018 Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve reports: If we continue to have very warm days, we may see the poppies peak soon. This week and next week may be the best times to see the few scattered poppies that we have, along with beautiful blooms of goldfields and lupines!

April 11, 2018 Rachel Facebook page reports: A lot is blooming along highway 395...from Ridgecrest to Independence.

April 11, 2018 Rena reports: The area east of Arvin, California driving along CA-223 towards CA-58 Highway has some pretty lupine, poppies, and some other deep yellow flowers.  It's not as dramatic as last year, but still is a pretty sight.  These photos were taken on 4-8-18.

April 11, 2018 Larry reports: I took a walk along the Chumash Trail to the Rocky Peak Trail and down the Las Llamas Trail in  Simi. So far the best wildflowers I've seen this year.  Not as good as many years, but after almost giving up it looks like there are a few flowers to be see in 2018.

See more on Page 2


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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.

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