In Search of Spring Wildflowers in California

You may have guessed when viewing my work that the spring season might be my favorite time to shoot. The vibrancy of nature is on full display come springtime, with flowers bursting and blooming just about anywhere you look. 

It comes as no surprise that making it out to California to see a super bloom is on my photographer must-do-and-see list. Now that travel is more open than it has been for over two years, I decided to do a little digging as to where and when to find wildflowers across the Golden State. And although the drought conditions of this past winter will most likely not produce a super bloom (it's actually a fairly rare occurrence every 10-15 years), superb blooms nonetheless can be found from the North to South all along the state. 

Just 75 miles north of  Los Angeles, the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve shows off dazzling displays of the state flower from mid-March to late April/May if conditions are right. 

To the south, California's largest park, Anza-Borrego State Park, about 80 miles northeast of San Diego is a desert wildflower heaven with lilies, sunflowers, apricot mallow, aster, and verbena even in off-peak years in the canyon trails.

To the north, Lake Tahoe is a stunning landscape any time of year but especially as the winter snow melts and waters its mountain slopes, the hills come alive in white, yellow, blue, orange and red, from late April to June.


Check out for more hotspots to hunt down the season's blooms and be sure to view my entire "Flower" series (as seen in Vanity Fair and House & Garden) to find your favorites for your home!