Field of desert sunflowers along Henderson Canyon Road.
I’ve lived in San Diego my entire life and I grew up going to the desert, including Anza-Borrego State Park, multiple times every year. I do not ever remember seeing the Anza-Borrego wildflowers in bloom like they are this year. I vaguely remember hiking with my mom and keeping our eyes peeled for the occasional desert bloom. But this year, because of the insanely above-average rain we’ve received in Southern California, the desert wildflowers are out in full force in Anza-Borrego. In fact, they’re saying this may be the biggest super bloom in 20 years.
Desert wildflowers along Anza-Borrego’s Peg Leg Road.
If you’re in Southern California, you’ll want to get out to Anza-Borrego as soon as possible to see the fields of desert wildflowers, because they’re not going to last very long. The delicate flowers will only last as long as the sun, wind, and caterpillars will allow.
Barrel Cactus in bloom.
Brown-eyed evening primrose.
Blooming creosote bush.
isited Anza-Borrego on Sunday, March 12, 2017. We were worried it would be incredibly crowded as it was the weekend, plus we got a late start thanks to daylight savings time. However, while there were more people than I’ve ever seen in Anza-Borrego, there was always plenty of space to park, even in the more popular spots, so don’t let the thought of weekend crowds scare you if you have to work during the week. It was crazy how many people were out with their cameras. We decided we haven’t seen that many cameras in one place, even in the touristiest places in Europe.
Dune evening primrose.
Using a map on the DesertUSA website, we chose to search for the Anza-Borrego wildflowers along Henderson Canyon Road and Peg Leg Road. We also found some good wildflowers that were a little bit different along Yaqui Pass Road. The desert wildflowers we found included purple sand verbena, yellow desert sunflower, white desert lily, desert dandelion, brown-eyed evening primrose, dune evening primrose, popcorn flower, Bigelow’s monkeyflower, desert chicory, barrel cactus, ocotillo, and creosote.
Wildflower eating caterpillar.
This size of super bloom of desert wildflowers doesn’t happen every year, so if you get the chance, take a drive to Anza-Borrego as soon as possible.