One benefit of this year’s rains, which were torrential by California’s standards, are the “super blooms” that have sprouted across the state. From the Temblor Range to the Gold Country to the Alabama Hills, this year’s rain and snow have resulted seeds, which were dormant for years, bloom and emerge as thriving carpets of color.

I recently paid a visit to one of them at the Whitewater Preserve, a recreational area just a short drive from Palm Springs. By this time of year, the hills are already parched, but this year the California brittlebush was relentless. Tourists, who are usually content to golf or enjoy the spas across the Coachella Valley, were jamming the access road into Whitewater when we visited a couple weeks ago.

And why wouldn’t they: these brown hills, majestic in their own right, offered far more than the occasional patch of sage-hued undergrowth. On that day, these hills were bursting with bright yellow blossoms, complemented nicely by snow-covered San Jacinto mountains posing as a spectacular backdrop.

The one problem with super blooms, however, is that they are fleeting. Many of those blossoms have clearly dried up and shriveled, leaving seeds that could bloom next spring, or not for another 10 or 20 years. The key to enjoying these spectacular nature shows is to head over as soon as year hear the flowers have bloomed, and monitor local blogs and news sites. This year has been an unusually rainy winter and spring; climate change may offer the same next year, or not. In any event, it is the unpredictability of these super blooms that make them incredibly special, and are a must if you happen to travel through California when they occur.

Image credits: Leon Kaye

Palm Springs, California, rain, climate change, super blooms, flowers, travel, Leon Kaye, drought

The super bloom at Whitewater Preserve, outside of Palm Springs

Palm Springs, California, rain, climate change, super blooms, flowers, travel, Leon Kaye, drought

The San Jacinto Mountains offer a spectacular backdrop

Palm Springs, California, rain, climate change, super blooms, flowers, travel, Leon Kaye, drought

Even little ones were spellbound by all the brittlebush

Palm Springs, California, rain, climate change, super blooms, flowers, travel, Leon Kaye, drought

These daisy-like flowers comprised an incredible yellow carpet

Palm Springs, California, rain, climate change, super blooms, flowers, travel, Leon Kaye, drought

Dormant plants contrast nicely with all the yellow

Palm Springs, California, rain, climate change, super blooms, flowers, travel, Leon Kaye, drought

I definitely did not want to leave

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he specializes in social media consulting and strategic communications. A journalist and writer since 2009, his work has appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. Areas of interest include the <a Middle East, sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (Leon Kaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). Since 2013, he has spent much of his time in Abu Dhabi, UAE, working with Masdar, the emirate's renewable energy company. He lives in Fresno, California.