Friday, March 31, 2023

Where The Wild (Flowery) Things Are: The Militant's Spring 2023 Southern California Wildflower Map!


A smattering of wildflowers in Walker Canyon near Lake Elsinore,
taken during the Spring 2019 Superbloom.

"L.A. has no seasons," goes the mantra of The Typical Transplant. But ah, why then are our mountain ranges green and not brown during the 2nd quarter of the year? Why are the stands of Dodger Stadium awash with blue again? And why does the sight of wildflowers attract people of all ages from young Instagram influencers to elderly grandparents?

It's wildflower season. It's the time when our native flora is present and alive. It's when humans go wild over the sight of countless plant genitalia. And we're blessed to have many areas that are not so far away from us where we can appreciate their ephemeral beauty. Do enjoy them now, for in a few months' time, the summer heat will dominate, the flowers will wither away, and the green will give way to golden brown. It's the Circle of Life, Simba.

The record winter rains have made our local wildflowers not only abundant, but have extended their season well into late April and perhaps May. The California Golden Poppy is the big star of the springtime show in this state, but other petals of red, white, purple, blue and yellow persuasions also make their presence known.

And so, The Militant has made a handy Google Map of the confirmed wildflower locations in Southern California - from San Luis Obispo County to San Diego County. All locations are based on personal, word-of-mouth and photographically-documented online observations. Do note that the addresses are based on the general publicly-accessible location (i.e. a park, nature preserve or hiking trail) and not necessarily the exact location of the blooms. But when you get there, the presence of the blooms should be obvious.

This map only includes areas where these flowers grow in the wild (hence, wildflowers - duh) and not any botanical gardens. Nothing against organized gardens, but it's more fun to see fish swim in the sea than in an aquarium, right?

This map is also continuously updated by The Militant several times a week, and certain locations known for wildflower blooms have not appeared on the map yet, because either the flowers have not yet bloomed, or The Militant has not yet seen or received reports of the bloom.

If you want to contribute to the map, shoot an email to The Militant (militantangeleno at gmail dot com) or send him a DM or @ on Twitter with a name and address of the location. If you're a wildflower-spotter and can ID the flowers, great! If you want, you can submit a photo and you'll get credit.

One more thing: Don't Doom The Bloom! Respect the marked trails and any property lines (if there are restricted areas). Don't step on the flowers! Nature is the main attraction here, not you! And Don't pick the flowers! They're not souvenirs, and they will quickly wilt anyway. Also, do note that not only have the flowers awoken from their winter hibernation, but so have the rattlesnakes. It's their home, not yours! Don't intrude on their area and they won't mess with you.

"But wait, Militant," you might ask, "Aren't you making things worse? These are closely-guarded secrets! They'll be ruined now that you're listing them all!" But au contraire - while the mainstream media only focuses on one location (as Lake Elsinore's Walker Canyon was back in 2019 - now it's currently closed to the public), the purpose of this map is to emphasize the fact that wildflowers are EVERYWHERE, and instead of focusing on one over-hyped location, The Militant is spreading out the crowds to other locations so that those other unsung locations can be appreciated and the handful of hyped-up "hot spots" won't be overloaded with crowds. You'll also notice that some areas, like the Antelope Valley and the southern Inland Empire have clusters of wildflower locations. You're strongly encouraged to make a day of it and visit them all! The Militant is doing a public service here!

Enjoy your spring superbloom, Southern California! And if you found this useful, help support The Militant Angeleno via PayPal!

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