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San Diego Super Bloom At Mission Trails Regional Park

A hillside in Mission Trails Regional Park covered in California poppies is p...

Credit: Courtesy: Gerald Tietje / Mission Trails Regional Park Volunteer

Above: A hillside in Mission Trails Regional Park covered in California poppies is pictured in this undated photo following a recent superbloom.

Mission Trails Regional Park has been getting a lot more visitors lately. Park rangers say they're coming to see more than a hundred different varieties of wild flowers and poppies native to San Diego.

"It has to be because of all the extra rains that we've had. It is definitely for us a super bloom if you will," said ranger Heidi Gutknecht. "It started more than a couple weeks ago, so some of them are already actually phasing out, but there are new ones I've noticed every week."

Gutknecht said this is the most poppies she has seen in her 14-year career at the park.

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Mission Trails stretches across about 7,200 acres and has a mix of chaparral, hills and grasslands that rangers say provides an environment that allows for both annual and perennial wildflowers, shrubs and trees.

Some of the popular yellow flowers that can be seen along the trails and walkways in the spring are golden yarrows, crown daisies, Johnny jump ups, Virgin's bower, golden tarweed, bladderpods, black mustard, California sunflowers, Hooker's evening primrose, deerweed, Bermuda buttercup, and common golden stars. These flowers and plants can range anywhere from 1 to 10 feet.

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The park also has several varieties of pink flowers including the San Diego sweet pea, ground pink, redstem filaree, splendid mariposa, shooting star, checkerbloom, stinging lupine, Chinese houses, and wild radish. The most common tree types in the park are western cottonwood, Engelmann's oak, California sycamore, and Coast Live Oak. In addition, you can find purple and lavender flowers like nightshade, Parry's phacelia, blue-eyed grass and Parry's larkspur.

RELATED: Tens Of Thousands Converge On California 'Poppy Apocalypse'

The best way to get a glimpse of them is by going on one of the park's hiking trails. There are trails for hikers of all skill levels with the Mission Gorge region and Fortuna regions having more options for less experienced hikers. Some of the flowers are visible by car along State Route 52.

Mission Trails Regional Park gates open at 8 a.m. and closes at 7 p.m. from April to October. The gates close at 5 p.m. November through March. The visitor's center is open daily from 9 A.M. to 5 P.M. and is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day.

Reported by Priya Sridhar


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