To me, deserts are some of the most beautiful eco systems found in the world.
Who can really affirm a desert is lifeless?
A few years ago, I visited the Antelope Valley California Reserve. It is located to the north of Los Angeles, close to the city of Lancaster.
Most years (depends on weather), the Mojave Desert gets covered under a sheet of bright orange flowers. The responsible for this burst of life is the state flower: the California poppy.
The poppy has always been recognized as something special. Early Spanish Californians called it Dormidera, “the drowsy one,” because the petals curl up at night. They fashioned a hair tonic/restorer by frying the blossoms in olive oil and adding perfume.
At the reserve, you can pick up a map at the Jane S. Pinheiro Interpretive Center, named for the painter who was instrumental in setting aside an area where California’s state ﬂower could be preserved for future generations to admire. Some of Pinheiro’s watercolors are on display in the center, which also has wildﬂower interpretive displays and a slide show.
Each spring the poppy makes us remember how alive is the Mojave. The spectacle is one of the best I have seen.
Just take a look.
Have you been to a place where flowers fields stretch beyond your gaze? Let me know in the comments section below.