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Wildflowers Blossom Across Nevada

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Alan Gegax

Mojave aster.

It’s springtime and wildflowers are blossoming throughout the state.

Thankfully, it’s not too late to see them. But they are more than just pretty — they play an important role in the environment.

Janel Johnson is a botanist with the Nevada Natural Heritage program. She says Nevada is home to a lot of wild buckwheats, members of the sunflower family like daisies and asters and the pea family like clover and lupins.

She said the flowers can range from tiny annuals to large shrubs, and because of Nevada's topography, wildflowers can be found all year.

“Because we have such elevation difference in Nevada, you can really see wildflowers all summer by going higher in elevation as the season progresses,” she said.

Alan Gegax is an avid hiker and a contributor to Desert Companion. He said on hikes around Southern Nevada you'll see marigold, brittle brush and lots of creosote. 

“When I lead hikes out at Red Rock, I get asked about these all the time. We’ll hike through a wash and there will be this big tree that’s just covered in these red flowers and you never see it except in the spring,” he said.

The tree is called the California redbud and now is the perfect time of year to see it.

He said you'll also find manzanita bushes that flower first then fruit tiny little apples, which are edible although a little tart.

Support comes from

If you would like to bring some native color into your garden, Johnson suggests state-run plant nurseries, the plant sales at Springs Preserve or the Xerces Society.

carson_city_monkeyflower.jpg

Carson City monkeyflower

hedgehog_cactus.jpg

Alan Gegax

Hedgehog catcus

manzanita.jpg

Alan Gegax

Manzanita bush

penstemon.jpg

Alan Gegax

Penstemon

purple_sage.jpg

Alan Gegax

Purple sage

From Nevada Public Radio: Desert Bloom

Guests

Janel Johnson, botanist, Nevada Natural Heritage Program; Alan Gegax, leader, Las Vegas Hikers Meetup Group

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