Tag

Anza Borrego

Photographs of Southern California’s Spring Wildflowers — the 2017 Super Bloom

Carlsbad, Desert, Joshua Tree, San Diego, Wildflowers

During March and early April of this year I was chasing the wildflower bloom around the southernmost parts of California. The wildflower bloom was indeed spectacular and went on for weeks with vast displays of color. Was it a “super bloom”? I’m not sure. Somewhere during March the interwebs began using “super bloom” and the term stuck. I’ve seen wildflower blooms equally spectacular in the past, especially in the desert, so perhaps those past events were all “super blooms” as well. One huge difference this year is that social media and news outlets picked up on it and created crowds the like I have never seen before. I did much of my photographing midweek in order for me to find solitude in the flower fields — weekends were out of the question due to the sheer number of people. My outings took me to Anza Borrego Desert State Park (many times), Joshua Tree National Park, Carrizo Plain National Monument, Elsinore, Hemet, Santa Rosa Plateau, Mount Palomar, La Jolla, and my backyard of La Costa and Carlsbad. Below are 42 of my favorite spring wildflower images from the Super Bloom of 2017. They are presented in the order in which they were made, starting around March 6 and ending mid April. Cheers, and thanks for looking!

California Poppies, Elsinore

California Poppies, Elsinore
Image ID: 33115
Location: Elsinore, California, USA

California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad

California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad
Image ID: 33120
Location: Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad, California, USA

Desert Lily in bloom, Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Desert Lily in bloom, Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33124
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33126
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad

California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad
Image ID: 33131
Location: Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad, California, USA

California Poppies, Diamond Valley Lake, Hemet

California Poppies, Diamond Valley Lake, Hemet
Image ID: 33134
Location: Hemet, California, USA

Wildflowers carpets the hills at Diamond Valley Lake, Hemet

Wildflowers carpets the hills at Diamond Valley Lake, Hemet
Image ID: 33139
Location: Hemet, California, USA

Wildflowers Bloom in Spring, Joshua Tree National Park

Wildflowers Bloom in Spring, Joshua Tree National Park
Image ID: 33142
Location: Joshua Tree National Park, California, USA

Wildflowers Bloom in Spring, Joshua Tree National Park

Wildflowers Bloom in Spring, Joshua Tree National Park
Image ID: 33144
Location: Joshua Tree National Park, California, USA

Wildflowers Bloom in Spring, Joshua Tree National Park

Wildflowers Bloom in Spring, Joshua Tree National Park
Image ID: 33146
Location: Joshua Tree National Park, California, USA

Chocolate lily growing among grasses on oak-covered hillsides. The chocolate lily is a herbaceous perennial monocot that is increasingly difficult to find in the wild due to habitat loss. The flower is a striking brown color akin to the color of chocolate, Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve, Murrieta, California

Chocolate lily growing among grasses on oak-covered hillsides. The chocolate lily is a herbaceous perennial monocot that is increasingly difficult to find in the wild due to habitat loss. The flower is a striking brown color akin to the color of chocolate.
Image ID: 33151
Location: Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve, Murrieta, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33154
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad

California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad
Image ID: 33161
Location: Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad, California, USA

Panorama of California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad

Panorama of California Poppies, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad
Image ID: 33164
Location: Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad, California, USA

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33168
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33173
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33179
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33184
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33186
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Wildflowers bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33188
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33192
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33193
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33198
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Brittlebush bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33200
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Purple owls clover, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad

Purple owls clover, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad
Image ID: 33208
Location: Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad, California, USA

Wildflowers, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad

Wildflowers, Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad
Image ID: 33213
Location: Rancho La Costa, Carlsbad, California, USA

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California

Dune Evening Primrose bloom in Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Image ID: 33220
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Borrego Springs, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33227
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

A Panorama of Wildflowers blooms across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

A Panorama of Wildflowers blooms across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33229
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Mustard and other Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Mustard and other Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33231
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33234
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33237
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33238
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33240
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33242
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33243
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33244
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33246
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33249
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33252
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument, Carrizo Plain National Monument, California

Wildflowers bloom across Carrizo Plains National Monument
Image ID: 33257
Location: Carrizo Plain National Monument, California, USA

Wildflowers along the La Jolla Cove cliffs, sunrise

Wildflowers along the La Jolla Cove cliffs, sunrise
Image ID: 33264
Location: La Jolla, California, USA

Red Barrel Cactus Photos, Anza Borrego Desert State Park

Cactus, California, Desert, Wildflowers

Thanks to John Dougherty for kindly helping us to correctly identify a number of flowering plants from recent visits to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. One of our favorite subjects was the Red Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus) which were just beginning to show their blooms.

Barrel cactus, brittlebush and wildflowers color the sides of Glorietta Canyon.  Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months, Ferocactus cylindraceus, Encelia farinosa, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California

Barrel cactus, brittlebush and wildflowers color the sides of Glorietta Canyon. Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months.
Image ID: 10899
Species: Red barrel cactus, Ferocactus cylindraceus, Encelia farinosa
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Barrel cactus, Glorietta Canyon.  Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months, Ferocactus cylindraceus, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California

Barrel cactus, Glorietta Canyon. Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months.
Image ID: 10906
Species: Red barrel cactus, Ferocactus cylindraceus
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Barrel cactus, Glorietta Canyon.  Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months, Ferocactus cylindraceus, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California

Barrel cactus, Glorietta Canyon. Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months.
Image ID: 10905
Species: Red barrel cactus, Ferocactus cylindraceus
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Barrel cactus, brittlebush, ocotillo and wildflowers color the sides of Glorietta Canyon.  Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months, Ferocactus cylindraceus, Encelia farinosa, Fouquieria splendens, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California

Barrel cactus, brittlebush, ocotillo and wildflowers color the sides of Glorietta Canyon. Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months.
Image ID: 10919
Species: Red barrel cactus, Ferocactus cylindraceus, Encelia farinosa, Fouquieria splendens
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Keywords: barrel cactus photo, flowering cactus, cacti, red barrel cactus, ferocactus, desert Anza-Borrego desert state park.

Canyon Sunrise, Anza Borrego Desert State Park

California, Desert, Wildflowers

Anza Borrego Desert State Park is currently experiencing an epic, once-in-a-lifetime bloom of desert wildflowers, bushes and cacti. The sand verbena and desert primrose flowers that had covered the valley floor so spectacularly in places in February seem to be receding or largely gone, replaced with poppies and lupine. However, the principal attraction now is a profusion of brittlebush filling the canyons and coloring the hillsides on the east side of the valley with yellow. The slopes along the Montezuma Grade leading down to Borrego Springs from the west are bright with brittlebush, so that they appear entirely yellow and green from afar. The density of brittlebush continues down toward the valley and into the canyons, washes and alluvial fans. Barrel and cholla cactus and ocotillo are just now beginning to bloom, so desert color in Anza Borrego should continue to improve for at least a few more weeks. There are many small assorted flowers still, along with caterpillers (munching the flowers) and butterflies. The following is a blended exposure shot at sunrise, composed of three images blended to account for the extreme range of light that neither film nor digital sensor can adequately capture in a single exposure:

Brittlebush, ocotillo and various cacti and wildflowers color the sides of Glorietta Canyon.  Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months, Encelia farinosa, Fouquieria splendens, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California

Brittlebush, ocotillo and various cacti and wildflowers color the sides of Glorietta Canyon. Heavy winter rains led to a historic springtime bloom in 2005, carpeting the entire desert in vegetation and color for months.
Image ID: 10895
Species: Brittlebush, Encelia farinosa, Fouquieria splendens
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

See all the photos from this shoot.

Keywords: Anza Borrego Desert State Park, photo, photographs, wildflower.

Photos of Wildflowers at Anza Borrego Desert State Park

California, Desert, Wildflowers

The spring wildflower bloom is happening right now at Anza Borrego Desert State Park, as well as many other places in California. The bloom appears to be early and thick this year due to the heavy rains we had over the past few months. Here are some examples, shot Sunday February 6, 2005. For the best current reports visit Carol Leigh’s California wildflower hotsheet.

Dune primrose blooms in spring following winter rains.  Dune primrose is a common ephemeral wildflower on the Colorado Desert, growing on dunes.  Its blooms open in the evening and last through midmorning.  Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Oenothera deltoides, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Dune primrose blooms in spring following winter rains. Dune primrose is a common ephemeral wildflower on the Colorado Desert, growing on dunes. Its blooms open in the evening and last through midmorning. Anza Borrego Desert State Park.
Image ID: 10458
Species: Dune Primrose, Dune Evening Primrose, Oenothera deltoides
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Brittlebush (yellow) and wild heliotrope (blue) bloom in spring, Palm Canyon, Encelia farinosa, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California

Brittlebush (yellow) and wild heliotrope (blue) bloom in spring, Palm Canyon.
Image ID: 10457
Species: Brittlebush, Encelia farinosa
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Dune primrose (white) and sand verbena (purple) bloom in spring in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, mixing in a rich display of desert color.  Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Oenothera deltoides, Abronia villosa, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Dune primrose (white) and sand verbena (purple) bloom in spring in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, mixing in a rich display of desert color. Anza Borrego Desert State Park.
Image ID: 10477
Species: Dune Evening Primrose, Sand Verbena, Oenothera deltoides, Abronia villosa
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Arizona lupine is a common early spring ephemeral wildflower of the Colorado Desert.  The purple-pink flowers show a yellow spot on the upper petal, which changes in color to red once the flower has been pollinated to discourage insects from visiting it after pollination.  This photo shows both red and yellow petals.  Anza Borrego Desert State Park, Lupinus arizonicus, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Arizona lupine is a common early spring ephemeral wildflower of the Colorado Desert. The purple-pink flowers show a yellow spot on the upper petal, which changes in color to red once the flower has been pollinated to discourage insects from visiting it after pollination. This photo shows both red and yellow petals. Anza Borrego Desert State Park.
Image ID: 10526
Species: Arizona lupine, Lupinus arizonicus
Location: Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, Anza Borrego, California, USA

Keywords: desert wildflower photos, Anza Borrego Desert State Park, wildflowers, spring, bl