Wet winter weather sets stage for vibrant spring
The wet El Niño winter has brought above average amounts of rain to Southern Nevada, promising a colorful spring wildflower bloom.
An El Niño weather pattern tends to result in warmer, wetter winter weather across the desert Southwest. This extra moisture allows for a higher rate of seed germination and root development, resulting in a greater probability of plant growth. Due to popularity, desert destinations like Death Valley National Park offer weekly updates on the status of the wild flower blooms so visitors can plan their trips accordingly.
Despite the abundance of plants and animals at the Las Vegas Wash, the annual debut of spring wildflowers may be considered a crowd favorite. Although the time of bloom may differ year-to-year due to temperature and rainfall, spring wildflowers always provide an enjoyable show for enthusiasts and casual observers alike. It's also an ideal time to take part in Wash activities such as bird watching, hiking and outdoor learning. The Clark County Wetlands Park provides paved hiking trails, bird-watching blinds and manmade ponds. The ponds demonstrate how important riparian plants can be as they filter water before it returns to Lake Mead.
Spring blossoms in the Wetlands Park can include desert globemallow, desert sunflower, desert marigold, indigo bush, brittlebush, desert sunray, and even the endangered Las Vegas bear poppy. Although spring can provide the most color, there are still plenty of flowering plants across the desert well into summer (desert willow, creosote bush and mesquites).