The Famous Desert Flowers of
Weather & Timing Matters
Rain is needed in small doses throughout the winter. Too little rain provides a poor climate for seed germination. Too much rain, and the seeds could rot or be washed away. Showers too early or too late in the season may not help the flowers bloom.
Temperature is also critical. Warm days are a good indicator of a full bloom ahead. If the sun gets too hot though, (over 85° in February / March) the seeds may become parched and seedlings scorched. Cool nights can assist flower seedlings by slowing the growth of competitors like grasses and mustards. However, very cold temperatures mean bad news for blossoms.
Along with all of these factors, the wildflowers must contend with the desert winds. Hot, arid winds may dry out the seeds before they have a chance to grow. High winds during the bloom may scatter the pollen before the next year's seeds have been produced.
When will the flowers bloom from
year to year? None of us knows for sure. Each year's bloom is unique in its variety, profusion, and timing. From late February through March, you can find blossoms on the desert floor. For up-to-date information, call
the Wildflower Hotline
If you should happen to miss the peak, take consolation in the fact that you've missed the peak crowds as well. A tranquil walk through the
Anza-Borrego Desert will reward you any time of year.