Posted by: Sandy Steinman | March 28, 2018

Anza-Borrego Wildflowers 3/26/18

Borrego Wildflowers reports

3/26/2018 The highest bloom count this season, that is individual plants not the abundance.

Some areas will get a below average bloom, with a lot of very tiny blooming plants. Peak bloom somewhere in April
The Coyote canyon area may be already be past peak bloom, with a lot of plants at the end of bloom. There are places with good germination, so the rain may give them another boost.

03/25/2018 Box Canyon Dry Lake and Playas
Back to the Playas between Box Canyon and Butler Canyon.

Yes, we found the second area with Narrow leaf globemallow, Sphaeralcea angustifolia, a tiny closed off playa above Butler canyon. Another playa may contain them, but the plants were too small for a positive ID.

Next stop the location were we found some Woody crinklemat, Tiquilia canescens canescens, to check if there are more.
Many more as it turned out, plants growing on both sides of a hill, mainly in the drainages. This is by far the easiest location on a shallow slope, but far away from any road.
The bloom isn’t spectacular but picking up many individual plants, many times only one on our entire 6 hours + trip.
Surprisingly there are many plants in bloom, at least since December, maybe not the same plants but for a long time, nevertheless.
To name a few: Smoketree, Psorothamnus spinosus; California trixis, Trixis californica californica; Brittlebush, Encelia farinosa; Apricot mallow, Sphaeralcea ambigua ambigua; California fagonia, Fagonia laevis.
Species in bloom below 3000 feet: 96.


03/24/2018 Lower Oriflamme CanyoBack to Oriflamme canyon, this time following the creek all the way. Sometimes interesting to find a way in the slow running creek.
Along the rocky side a lot of Arizona chalk dudleya, Dudleya arizonica getting ready for bloom.
The bloom is already good for the time of year and elevation.
We already found plants that looked like Poison oak, Toxicodendron diversilobum on our previous trips, but we were not sure.
Until we found one small plant in bloom, a good bloom picture was needed, as the plant isn’t that common in the desert.
Another very common plant here and in good bloom, Woolly indian paintbrush, Castilleja foliolosa.

03/23/2018 Hawi Vallecito – Lower Storm Canyon loop
The area looks dry, but the Creosote bush, Larrea tridentata are bright a sign they got water recently.
Right from the start we picked up a good bloom count and once entering the small drainage things looked even better.
There is considerable germination in and outside of the washes, this area is very promising.
Unfortunately the upper part of Storm canyon is filled with Sahara mustard;Asian mustard, Brassica tournefortii.
Finding a couple of weird Mirabilis laevis that looked nothing like retrorsa, took us an extra half hour, to capture a large number of plants.
Species in bloom below 3000 feet: 72.

See photos and older reports at Borrego Wildflowers


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