12 Best Wild Flowers in California

Raul Cornelius is a Senior Editor at BalconyGardenWeb and an expert in flower and herb cultivation based in Phoenix, Arizona. A frequent speaker at horticultural events, he is also an active contributor to Facebook flower groups. Holding an MBA and a BCom, Raul blends his gardening skills with strong leadership and analytical abilities. Passionate about writing and photography, he enjoys early mornings with coffee and books, and nature bike rides during weekends.
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California is home to some beautiful wildflowers with stunning looks. Find out more about the Best Wild Flowers in California. 

The state’s diverse landscapes, from deserts to mountains, offer unique habitats for a vast array of wildflower species, some of which are found nowhere else in the world. Read on to learn about the Best Wild Flowers in California.

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Best Wild Flowers in California

1. California Poppy

Wild Flowers in California 1

Botanical Name: Eschscholzia californica

The California poppy is the state flower of California and is a sight to behold when it blankets hillsides with its bright orange blossoms.

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2. Chocolate Lily

Botanical Name: Fritillaria biflora

The chocolate lily gets its name from the deep brown color of its flowers, which are shaped like bells and hang downward from the stem.

3. Blue-Eyed Grass

Botanical Name: Sisyrinchium bellum

Blue-eyed grass is a small perennial that produces star-shaped blue or violet flowers that are about half an inch in diameter.

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4. Indian Paintbrush

Wild Flowers in California 4

Botanical Name: Castilleja spp

The Indian paintbrush is a vibrant wildflower that comes in a variety of colors, including red, orange, and pink. It is common in meadows, grasslands, and open forests.

5. Wild Rose

Botanical Name: Rosa californica

The wild rose is a beautiful shrub that produces pink or white flowers with a sweet fragrance. It grows best in well-draining soil.

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6. Matilija Poppy

Wild Flowers in California 6

Botanical Name: Romneya coulteri

The Matilija poppy, also known as the fried eggplant, is a large, showy wildflower with white petals and a yellow center.

7. Lupine

Botanical Name: Lupinus spp.

Lupines are a group of wildflowers that come in a variety of colors, including blue, purple, pink, and yellow. This wildflower typically blooms in the spring.

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8. California Buckwheat

Wild Flowers in California 8

Botanical Name: Eriogonum fasciculatum

The California buckwheat is a shrub that produces small, white to pink flowers in clusters. This wildflower typically blooms from June to September.

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9. Farewell-to-Spring

Botanical Name:  Clarkia amoena

Farewell-to-spring is a wildflower that blooms in the late spring and early summer, producing stunning shades of pink, red, and purple.

10. Violet Ithuriel’s Spear

Wild Flowers in California 10

Botanical Name: Triteleia laxa

Violet Ithuriel’s Spear is a wildflower native to California. The flower is a member of the Liliaceae family and has six pointy petals and a star-like center.

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11. Blue Dicks


Botanical Name:Dichelostemma capitatum

It is native to California and Baja California, where it is common in dry, open areas in the coastal sage scrub and chaparral habitats.

12. Narrow Leaf Mule’s Ear

Wild Flowers in California 12

Botanical Name: Wyethia angustifolia

The Narrow Leaf Mule’s Ear is a flowering plant native to California. It grows in chaparral and oak woodland in the foothills and blooms from March to June with yellow flowers.

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