2012-03-08 / Front Page

Poppies will continue Merced River canyon show

Photo credit: Mike Yochim

Mariposa County's native gold--California poppies--were putting on a show in the Merced River canyon early this week. 

The flowers open their petals and show yellow-orange color in sunny weather. Viewers may want to wait for warmer weather to take in the full display.

The photo displayed with this text was taken by a mountain biker who followed the old Yosemite Valley Railroad grade about three miles above Briceburg.

This past weekend, the area was lush with poppies despite the lack of precipitation this rainy season. The poppy bloom will likely continue with especially brilliant displays during warm, sunny weather over the next month or so.

One popular area for poppy and other spring wildflower viewing is the Hite Cove trail about halfway between Briceburg and El Portal.

California poppies are a member of the genus Eschscholzia, named for the German botanist Johann Friendrich von Eschscholtz. They were first seen by Europeans in the 1810s during a Pacific Coast exploration by the Russian ship Rurik.


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