Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve

Heat, Then Rain: Here's What's Up, Poppy Fans

The fluttery orange favorites have experienced some wilting, but there are still bright sights to see.

Mimi Ditchie Photography

What to Know

  • The Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve is near Lancaster
  • The reserve is the home to springtime poppies and other wildflowers
  • Poppy Cam, a live feed, gives people at home a current look at how the bloom is doing

A soggy spring day in Southern California can prompt us to begin pondering poppies, and all wildflowers, and if this welcome dose of dampness is helping the petal-producing situation in some of our region's remote and spectacular areas.

The answer from the Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve arrived a day ahead of the March 28, 2022 storm, and while it involves heat, it might leave flower fans feeling a little cool: The recent hot weather, where temperatures approached the triple digits in some spots, didn't help the burgeoning bloom at the Lancaster-close location.

"The recent heatwave and lack of rain have made many of the poppies wilt," revealed the March 27 post.

"There are a few more poppies on the north-facing slopes of the Reserve where they tend to bloom a little later in the season, Check in with the staff at the visitor center to find out which trails have more poppies and other wildflowers currently in bloom."

Recent photos, though, reveal that there are plenty of orange-strong stretches, even if the "carpet-tacular," where the poppies seem to form long waves of incredible color, isn't occurring.

A solid idea before making for the reserve is to check out Poppy Cam, which provides up-to-the-minute images of the reserve's hills, which are also home to fiddlenecks, forget-me-nots, and other wildflowers.

A day-use fee is $10, and parking is "limited."

Poppy season isn't over, not nearly, but a heatwave can impact the sublime and showy specimens.

Your best bet? Keep an eye on the reserve's social media pages, to see if April has any sweet surprises up her sleeve.

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