Wet spring could boost wildflowers at Tahoe

The Associated Press

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE and#8212; Nature lovers could be in for a treat soon at Lake Tahoe.

Botanists are hoping several weeks of unusually cool, wet spring weather will make for a banner wildflower season in the Sierra Nevada.

“Things around the basin are just getting started. Now that it’s going to warm up, it’s going to happen fast,” said Karen Wiese, author of “Sierra Nevada Wildflowers.”

While some flowers won’t start to bloom until October, the best time for wildflower viewing in the region is typically between now and the end of July, she said.

Lupine and camas lilies already are cropping up in Hope Valley, about 20 miles south of Lake Tahoe. In a couple of weeks, nearby Carson Pass will be another splendid place to stop and smell the flowers, Wiese added.

For those who prefer not to leave the car, Blue Lakes Road off Highway 88 near Hope Valley provides easy access to bountiful displays.

While the soggy spring is no guarantee of a plentiful wildflower season, the warm weather certainly will help, said Cheryl Beyer, a botanist for the U.S. Forest Service’s Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.

“We expect them as soon as the weather warms up, which looks like this week, so we should probably have something blooming,” Beyer told the Tahoe Daily Tribune. “That’s what we’ve been waiting for.”

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