PAUL GILL: The Estrella Mountain Park is starting to show carpets of poppies high on the northern slopes of the Rainbow Valley Trail. Start at the Rodeo Arena Parking lot and hike west. The best wildflowers are located about a half to a mile in, with lupine and fiddleneck already at one foot tall! This area should be great in one to two weeks with the recent rains that will double the bloom stalks and give solid midday carpets of poppies. Also look for a brittlebush and strawberry hedgehog to begin blooming in three to four weeks. All photographs on this post are from this week.
BRUCE TALBERT: The White Tank Mountain Regional Park (location #21 in the Wild in Arizona: Photographing Arizona’s Wildflowers guidebook) looked OK. There were enough poppies blooming to keep your attention but little else. There were a few lupines but sparse and small. The best areas were the first 1/2 mile of Mesquite Trail west of Area 7, the west side of White Tank Mountain Road near Area 3, and the trails that lead west of Area 3. The brittlebush showed small flower buds and looked healthy, but were not yet flowering. They will likely present a better show here than the poppies.