Monterey Peninsula

Ice Plants Begin Their Stunning Spring Show

Flower fans: Make for Pacific Grove and Monterey in mid-April, May, and into June to admire the famous flowers.

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What to Know

  • The springtime show formed by blankets of South African drosanthemum floribundum pops in April and May
  • Pacific Grove is a great spot to admire the ultra-bright flowers, also known as ice plants
  • Free to see

THE COASTAL AREAS... of California all have their distinctive seasons, much like places that are far further inland. Of course, our state's beaches and bluffs experience spring when we do, and summer and fall and winter, but because of the unique circumstances and weather-related occurrences of the coast, it also has its own fascinating flows, those returning annual hallmarks that pop up again and again. For sure, May Gray, June Gloom, summer fog, and other atmospheric staples are well-known by beach buffs, but fans of the coast know to also look down at the ground around the middle of April. And if you're in Pacific Grove, chances are strong that you'll encounter countless purple-pink flowers, the South African drosanthemum floribundum, a type of ice plant. It's a stunner of a sight, so much so that many people also know it as the "magic carpet."

THE PACIFIC GROVE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE... has more information and history on these flowers, which only seem brighter when they open just steps from the oh-so-blue Pacific. If you're calling upon this part of the peninsula as April rolls into May, and May into June, make for Perkins Park, where the pink petals are known to grow in profusion. There's so much to do right in Pacific Grove, if you've stopped by the quaint burg to admire its eye-popping springtime bloom. Point Pinos Lighthouse is one fascinating, history-rich stop, while the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History celebrates another ambassador of the area, the majestic Monarch butterfly.

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