Environment

‘Super whoa’: See the best photos of California’s wildflower super bloom

Take a walk among the wildflowers of Shell Creek Road

Join Daniel Sinton, director of operations for Avenales Ranch, as he talks about the super bloom of wildflowers on his property along Shell Creek Road in northern San Luis Obispo County, California.
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Join Daniel Sinton, director of operations for Avenales Ranch, as he talks about the super bloom of wildflowers on his property along Shell Creek Road in northern San Luis Obispo County, California.

California is still going crazy for the super bloom that’s painted hillsides, valleys — even airport runways — in vibrant shades of gold, orange and purple for the past few weeks.

The rainy winter that cleared drought conditions throughout the state has created supreme conditions for wildflowers, which are bursting in swathes of color on the Central Coast and throughout Southern California.

Travelers flying in and out of Los Angeles International Airport in mid-March were treated to fields of orange wildflowers blooming near runways bustling with airplane traffic.

And tens of thousands of California poppy-seekers overran Walker Canyon near Lake Elsinore — a town southeast of Los Angeles in Riverside County — last month, leading to a “poppy apocalypse” for residents.

Hillsides covered with photogenic bright orange flowers drew “Disneyland-size crowds” to the area, clogging roads and forcing city officials to temporarily shut down the area before setting up a paid shuttle service.

Steve Manos, mayor of Lake Elsinore, even filmed an Instagram PSA to explain the city doesn’t have enough resources to keep the area closed during “poppy-palooza.”

“We are full,” Manos said in the March 18 video. “If you have the opportunity to come back here maybe later or another day, we would really appreciate that.”

More recent social media photos show the Walker Canyon bloom starting to fade, although it’s still attracting visitors.

For the latest super bloom updates from throughout the state, check out the Wild Flower Hotline, which is run by the Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants.

Here are some social media highlights from wildflower blooms throughout California:

Carrizo Plain National Monument, San Luis Obispo County

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So purrrdy! #march2019 #superbloom #carrizoplain

A post shared by Jocelyn Scofield (@jocelynscofield) on

Figueroa Mountain, Santa Barbara County

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Ahh let the flowers talk

A post shared by Kathee Miller (@katheemiller) on

Joshua Tree National Park, San Bernardino County

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A post shared by Wynn Grissom (@lauwynni) on

 

Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve, Los Angeles County

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, San Diego County

When are wildflowers are blooming? How do I get to the Carrizo Plain super bloom? What supplies do I need to bring? What are the road conditions? Your touring questions are answered in this video.

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Lindsey Holden writes about housing, immigration and everything in between for The Tribune in San Luis Obispo. She also covers northern San Luis Obispo County city governments and school districts. Lindsey joined The Tribune in 2016 after working for the Rockford Register Star in Illinois. She’s a native Californian raised in the Midwest and is a proud graduate of two Chicago schools: DePaul University and Northwestern University.


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