Desert marigold blooming in Paul's garden

Will we have a good wildflower season in 2012?  That’s the million-dollar question, one we’re already trying to answer!

Though the start of the Arizona wildflower season is still several months away, we’ve started to actively track the precipitation now to help predict what will happen next year.  The current models say the Grand Canyon State will experience another La Nina year, which indicates a drier than normal year.  That said, forecasters are expecting weekly erratic rains now through January.  Keep your eye on the current weather and the Farmer’s Almanac for the Southwest region at http://www.farmersalmanac.com/long-range-weather-forecast/southwest-us/, which provides predictions for the next two months.

Mother Nature will ultimately decide how next year’s wildflower season turns out, but we’re already seeing signs of beautiful blooms.  The photos here are from Paul’s wildflower test garden this week, which show some wild poppies and scorpionweed beginning to show.  There’s even a desert marigold in full bloom!  The small poppy sprouts still could freeze off.  Marigolds bloom year-round so this type of growth is normal, but it looks better than last year.

Poppy sprouts from Paul's garden

Stay tuned to our Wild in Arizona blog, as we’ll be posting up-to-date information from the field as things develop now thru next March.  In the meantime, be sure to grab your copy of our newest book, “Wild in Arizona:  Photographing Arizona’s Wildflowers, A Guide to When, Where, and How” (http://www.wildinarizona.com) to read more information about predicting wildflowers and to get ready for next spring’s bounty in Arizona!

~Paul and Colleen

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