Because the drive was so long, we didn't have hours to hike trails into the desert so we caught only a small portion of the wildflowers. A more thorough exploration probably would have required at least an overnight stay. Temperatures in the mid-to-upper 90sF also limited our exploration but here are some of the highlights:
|Scene near the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park's Visitor Center|
|The majority of the blue, white and yellow flowers in this area were clustered around cactus or, as here, skeletons of cactus|
|My guess is that the cactus skeleton shown above was what was left of what I think is a Teddy Bear Cholla (Cylindropuntia bigelovii), which, both dead and alive, were plentiful in the area|
|If I've identified the yellow, white and blue blooms correctly they are Desert Dandelion (Malacothrix glabrata), Desert Pincushion (Chaenactis steviodes) and Blue Phacelia (Phacelia distans)|
|This shrub, which I think is Creosote Bush (Larrea tridentata), was also prevalent|
|As were these shrubs, Brittlebush (Encelia farinosa) and what I tentatively identified as Desert Lavender (Hyptis emoryi)|
|Ocotillo (Fouquieria splendens) could also be seen everywhere but they appeared to be just starting their bloom cycle|
Concerned about how much longer our trip home might take on SoCal's famously congested freeways if we didn't get a lead on rush-hour traffic, we had to turn around and head home all too soon. We tried to capture snaps of the California poppies and lupines as we whizzed along the highway but there was nowhere to pull over.
|There were lupines here and there in Borrego Springs but nothing like this mass of purple we saw from the highway|
|Masses of orange poppies could also be seen as we whizzed along Highway 15|
Near Lake Elsinore in western Riverside County, we finally pulled off the road to take another flurry of photos of California's official state flower in all its glory.
|Massive traffic jams were reported in this area over the past 2 weeks and, even in late afternoon mid-week, it was hard to find a spot to park. I'm offering this photo of the area near Walker's Canyon as my Wednesday Vignette - for more photo vignettes, visit Anna at Flutter & Hum.|
|Once again, we didn't have the time to hike far but we got our fix of California poppies (Eschscholzia californica) anyway|
If you're interested some of the wildflowers we missed, additional photos can be found here and here.
All material © 2012-2017 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party