Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Parks to use Internet to show off wildflowers

[Source: B. Poole, Tucson Citizen] -- Park rangers will use the Internet to help travelers decide whether wildflower views are worth a trip, according to an Arizona State Parks news release. When the blooms start, rangers across the state will post photos of flower hot spots, giving potential visitors a preview. The photos will be updated regularly and combined with other park information to aid travelers, the release said. Healthy winter rain has Picacho Peak sprouting a potentially spectacular bloom, said Picacho Peak State Park Manager Rob Young. In 2001 - the area's last great flower year, Picacho got 5.77 inches of rain from September to January, a key period for the best germination. This year it was 5.4 inches, Young said. Blooms could start as late as early March if the weather stays cool or sooner if weather is warmer, the release said. [Photo source: Kenneth Sharrocks.]