I’m still stopping by the roadsides & travelling around town to enjoy all the wild flowers blooming in San Diego after our wonderful rainy season this year that ended a 10-year drought. These photos are of the Los Penasquitos March Nature Preserve & Lagoon between Del Mar and Torrey Pines State Reserve and State Beach. I was on the hunt today for wild California Buckwheat, which is a major source of nectar for butterflies & honey bees. The white flowers with a hint of pink clump together on top of woody stems with deep green leaves. Really lovely. While I was photographing the bees were buzzing! Of course there was more wild Mustard growing there and I was surprised to find tons of Prickly Pear Cactus there, too. Torrey Pines State Reserve is to the south and La Jolla appears in the distant landscape. Torrey Pines State Beach is a wonderful place to drive by early in the morning and see the Inshore Dolphins surfing the glassy waves. Really it is such magical world and I am so lucky.
After winter rains, it is time for the wild flowers to in the Anza Borrego Desert. Some years there may be no wild flower bloom at all & other years the blooming flowers may be spectacular. This makes seeing these wild flowers very special. No one knows which ones will bloom, if they bloom at all.
These flowers are Desert Dandelion & Golden Poppies & when they bloom as a group, the desert floor is a carpet of yellow wild flowers.
The Desert Lily is one of these lovely wild flower gems to search for. I love lilies & the graceful arching serrated leaves are lovely as they lay against the desert floor.
Some of the flowers are lovely shades of purples & pinks, too. The wild flower on the left is Sand Verbena. I think the one on the right is Larkspur.
What would a desert landscape be without cactus? These are Barrel Cactus. There are all kinds of wild flowers & cactus. I think a lifetime study of these would be required to know all of their names, especially since they don’t bloom every year!
This cactus is called a Teddy Bear Cactus. I don’t see a teddy bear, but I do see a rabbit!
Here are a few of my quick Japanese brush paintings of desert wild flowers & cactus.
One of the inhabitants of the Anza Borrego Desert is Big Horn Sheep. I have not yet been lucky enough to see them in the wild.
There is lots of wild life living in the desert that is not easily seen at first glance. I’m glad that Anza Borrego State Park is preserving this very special & unique environment for all to come & enjoy.