SAN DIEGO — The extremely wet winter Southern California endured this year has been extraordinarily beneficial for plants, especially wildflowers.
A superbloom, which occurs when mass amounts of wildflower grow in a barren landscape, can be found across the Golden State for the 2023 spring season.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) released satellite images comparing an arid April 2022 desert in Carrizo Plain National Monument, located just west of Bakersfield, to a blooming one on April 6.
The images were captured by NASA’s Operational Land Imager-2 on Landsat 9.
Los Angeles-based nonprofit, The Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers & Native Plants, described the natural phenomenon at Carrizo Plain during California’s last superbloom in 2019.
“There are currents of goldfields (Lasthenia californica) and splashes of blue valley phacelia (Phacelia ciliate) bobbing around in the yellow sea, while the smaller tidy tips (Layia platyglossa) try to find an island of soil not filled with taller flowers….Desert candle (Caulanthus inflatus) can be found sprinkled about as well. The recommended viewing spots for all of this colorful bloom is along Soda Lake Road,” the nonprofit organization said.
In Anza-Borrego Desert, 10 separate superblooms were tallied over four decades following winters when precipitation was higher than average, according to ecologists with the University of California.