Mojave Desert 2014

Early in 2014, the coming spring bloom seemed to be doomed because of the unusually dry winter. Then in the last few days of February and the first few days of March the rain came down in quantity. Pasadena received approximately 6 inches of rain, and the nearby deserts were also well watered. The result several weeks later was one of the grandest Mojave Desert flower seasons that anyone can recall.

Our chapter arranged a special field trip to the Mojave Desert in early April to see this bloom. The photos below represent a selection of images from that field trip and from surrounding days. They give a good impression of the great variety of plants and flowers to be seen in the desert.

Two areas were visited in particular, Black Butte Basin Road and Bob's Gap.

Click on the thumbnails to see higher-resolution images.

A. Black Butte Basin Road

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Here we go

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Flowers ahead

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In the desert

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Collecting ideas

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San Gabriel Mountains

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Apricot mallow (Sphaeralcea ambigua)

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Brown-eyed primrose (Camissonia claviformis)

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California coreopsis (Leptosyne californica)

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California evening primrose (Oenothera californica subsp. californica)

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Common pussypaws (Calyptridium monandrum)

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Cooper's broomrape (Aphyllon cooperi)

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Cooper's broomrape (Aphyllon cooperi)

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Common fiddleneck (Amsinckia intermedia)

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Cooper's boxthorn (Lycium cooperi)

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Interior goldenbush (Ericameria linearifolia)

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Creosote bush (Larrea tridentata)

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Cushion cryptantha (Cryptantha circumscissa var. circumscissa)

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Desert calico (Loeseliastrum matthewsii)

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Desert calico (Loeseliastrum matthewsii)

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Desert dandelion (Malacothrix glabrata)

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Desert death camas (Toxicoscordion brevibracteatum)

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Desert death camas (Toxicoscordion brevibracteatum)

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Desert ma riposa lily (Calochortus kennedyi)

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Evening snow (Linanthus dichotomus subsp. dichotomus)

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Fremont's monkeyflower (Mimulus fremontii var. fremontii)

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Fremont's monkeyflower (Mimulus fremontii var. fremontii)

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Fremont pincushion (Chaenactis fremontii)

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Fremont's phacelia (Phacelia fremontii)

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Fremont's phacelia (Phacelia fremontii)

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Rayless goldenhead (Acamptopappus sphaerocephalus)

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Jones's blazing star (Mentzelia jonesii)

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Mojave monardella (Monardella exilis)

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Mojave sand verbena (Abronia pogonantha)

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Mojave sand verbena (Abronia pogonantha)

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Mojave suncup (Chylismia claviformis subsp. integrior)

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Mojave suncup (Chylismia claviformis subsp. integrior)

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Mojave suncup (Chylismia claviformis subsp. integrior)

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Mojave aster (Xylorhiza tortifolia var. tortifolia)

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Mojave aster (Xylorhiza tortifolia var. tortifolia)

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Nuttall's crinklemat (Tiquilia nuttallii)

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Pale yellow suncup (Camissoniopsis pallida)

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Paper bag bush (Scutellaria mexicana)

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Paper bag bush (Scutellaria mexicana)

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Paper bag bush (Scutellaria mexicana)

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Parry's linanthus (Linanthus parryae)

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Parry's linanthus (Linanthus parryae)

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Parry's linanthus (Linanthus parryae)

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Pringle's woolly sunflower (Eriophyllum pringlei)

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Purple desert sage (Salvia dorrii)

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Purple mat (Nama demissa var. demissa)

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Red triangles (Centrostegia thurberi)

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Red triangles (Centrostegia thurberi)

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Sapphire woolly star (Eriastrum sapphirinum)

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Sapphire woolly star (Eriastrum sapphirinum)

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Silver puffs (Uropappus lindleyi)

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Thistle sage (Salvia carduacea)

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Thistle sage (Salvia carduacea)

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Thistle sage (Salvia carduacea)

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Two-color phacelias (Phacelia bicolor)

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White stemmed blazing star (Mentzelia albicaulis)

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White stemmed blazing star (Mentzelia albicaulis)

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Whilte mallow (Eremalche exilis)

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Whilte mallow (Eremalche exilis)

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White layia (Layia glandulosa)

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Winter fat (Krascheninnikovia lanata)

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Woolly milkweed (Asclepias vestita)

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Woolly milkweed (Asclepias vestita)

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Woolly milkweed (Asclepias vestita)

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Yellow pepperweed (Lepidium flavum)

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B. Bob's Gap Area

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Acton encelia (Encelia actoni)

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Blue dicks (Dichelostemma capitatum)

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California coreopsis (Leptosyne californica)

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Chia (Salvia columbariae)

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Cream cups (Platystemon californicus)

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Cream cups (Platystemon californicus)

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Fremont's gold (Syntrichopappus fremontii)

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Parish's larkspur (Delphinium parishii )

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Parish's larkspur (Delphinium parishii )

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Parish's larkspur (Delphinium parishii )

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Perfoliate spineflower (Mucronea perfoliata)

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Scale bud (Anisocoma acaulis)

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Scarlet milkvetch (Astragalus coccineus)

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Veatch's blazing star (Mentzelia veatchiana)

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Veatch's blazing star (Mentzelia veatchiana)

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Yellow turbans (Eriogonum pusillum)

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Yellow turbans (Eriogonum pusillum)

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Yellow turbans (Eriogonum pusillum)

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Interior goldenbush (Ericameria linearifolia)

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Showy gilia (Gilia cana)

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ACKNOWLEDGMENT

Photos by John Thompson.

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