San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature ConnectionSDNHM Field Guide

March Wildflower Report

A Desert Lily gives its all, near Calexico, Imperial County, 8 March 1998 8 March, 1998-- This is a desert wildflower season that they'll talk about for a decade!

Think the media coverage of the bloom in the Borrego Valley is just journalistic hype? It isn't! The flower display is spectacular. So is the number of people going to see it. Here are some tips for avoiding the crush.

Tip One: Go on a weekday, or as early as you can get there in the morning. If your desert trip will include other stops (which we strongly recommend!), do the Borrego Springs area first.

Tip Two: While DiGiorgio Road is deservedly getting a lot of publicity, it's not the only spot worth seeing in the Valley. Drive along Henderson Canyon Road and other roads. Keep your eye open for the purple Sand Verbena that marks the spots where you'll find a variety of flowers that thrive in deep sand.

Tip Three: Take a lunch and plenty of water; you can lose a lot of your desert time trying to fight the crowds in restaurants.

Tip Four: While the Borrego Valley is a must-see experience this spring, all the other areas of the desert are worth seeing, too. You'll find that the southern portion of the desert -- lower in elevation, and warmer -- has had a head start, and the desert lilies are high (see the photo on this page, taken today near Calexico). Canyons, washes, and rocky slopes are filled with their own special assortment of species different from the sand-lovers seen in the Valley.

Tip Five: Don't drive yourself to exhaustion! Instead, plan another trip in a week or two, perhaps to a different area.

And above all, relax and enjoy an experience you won't be able to repeat soon.— Judy Gibson


Can you contribute reports on a wildflower spot in southern California or the Baja California peninsula?
Please write to website@sdnhm.org.

Desert Lily - Judy Gibson 1998