Spring is here—but a lot more so for many Californians, it seems, who are enjoying a dizzying, nearly psychedelic “superbloom” that has seen its hills explode with hyper-saturated wildflowers that are brighter than a Van Gogh painting and is viewable from space.
Satellite images from Maxar Technologies show that California’s superbloom is so expansive that this year it can be seen from space. NASA’s Landsat 9 satellite, launched in 2021 to grab images of the surface of the Earth, sent back images of bright purple and green blooms in Carrizo Plain National Park.
The previous superbloom was in 2019. This year’s massive was caused by a memorably wet winter. Superblooms are unusual and happen when a multitude of dormant seeds sprout all at once after several years of dry weather.
UCD Plant Sciences Professor Jennifer Funk of Uc Davis explains that the annual wildflowers seen now make it just 12 months, do not germinate in these dry years and will remain dormant in the soil until conditions are right. When all of these dry years happen in a row, wildflower seeds accumulate.
Check out the surreal images below and experience the superbloom in person this weekend.
Stay on top of the latest in L.A. news, food, and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today.