The Carlsbad Flower Fields… and Global Warming?

“You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.”

~Walter Hagen

California is such a vast wonderland. I think I had started to take it for granted. While I am looking for new and exciting places to visit, I forget that people come here for vacation. It’s a wonderful place that I fear I have gotten way too accustomed to.

So I decided to look into cool photography spots in Cali, specifically in the LA area. But while searching the Interwebs, I ran across a little gem: The Carlsbad Flower Fields.

How have I missed this? As many times as I have been down to visit San Diego and Carlsbad I had never heard of the Flower Fields. And to cap it off, it was right across the street from the outlet mall I have visited. #shame

So I decided to go down and shoot the fields. Fifty acres of Ranunculus (aka the buttercup flower) in various colors across the hillside. Sounded perfect.

But the trip almost didn’t happen. I happened to be down in Carlsbad area on opening day, March 1. No flowers. So I decided to come back mid-April, since the season was from March 1 through May 1.

But as the dates got closer, it looked like it may not happen. I think that global warming almost put the kibosh on my plans. In the weeks leading up to my anticipated date, the Flower Fields’ site said that there were 50 acres in full bloom. Then two weeks before, the number was down to 30 acres. Two days later, 20 acres! I was panicking. The flowers were dying before I could make it down there. Probably attributable to global warming coupled with the California drought, these flowers were fading fast. I started having people in the area check to see if there were any flowers the days leading up to me driving down so I didn’t make the drive for nothing.

Luckily, I made it in time. I got to see *some* flowers. But the remaining field, just next to the one in full bloom was clearly dying. And the field that I was shooting also looked less full than I anticipated, despite being in “full” bloom.

From here out, I will let the photos show, not tell. The photos still ended up beautiful and the fields were wonderful to see. But my PSA: We have got to take better care of the planet, because, otherwise, these beautiful sites aren’t going to be around for long.

Gorgeous golds. Oranges and pinks/reds make for a beautiful rainbow. 

The flowers are so pretty up close.

The Flower Fields overlook the ocean and the picturesque windmill.

The Flower Fields offer wagon rides for patrons to see the grounds, along with hosting special events and concerts on the grounds. All with the flowers in the backdrop.

For more photographs of the gorgeous Carlsbad Flower Fields, click here.


I am a lawyer. I am a journalist. I am a writer. I am a photographer. And I love to travel.

23 comments on “The Carlsbad Flower Fields… and Global Warming?”

  1. California is my favorite state in the country. Such beautiful sites everywhere you turn. I’d never heard of the Flower Fields before. Thanks for sharing! BTW that field of yellow flowers is gorgeous!

  2. Wow! The flower bed looks amazing! I dream of going to places like these. I live in Cali, and I have never heard of this place before. Guess I need to do more exploring haha. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  3. I’ve never had the chance to go out to the “Left Coast” , but if I do, I want to stop at this place. These pictures are beautiful, so I can only imagine what it looks like in person.

  4. I have never been to California, but if I go I want to check these out. These flowers look beautiful and it would be a very romantic place to visit as well.

  5. This would be totally a gorgeous place to visit one day. The pictures are just amazing indeed. I would love to go on a wagon ride to see all this for sure. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Absolutely Serene! Next time let me know…lol. Just kidding. That is beauty by definition and glad you got to experience it. I saw the Windmill and didn’t know that there were any in USA. I usually associate them with Holland. Gorgeous pictures by the way

  7. I’ve always wanted to visit California and after seeing your photos, I want to visit even more. Those flowers and the colors sure brightened up my dreary Monday. How stunning. I wish others were more concerned about taking care of our planet.

  8. Wow! You are so right about people taking trips to where you LIVE! I have never been to California and I can’t wait to visit, it always looks so beautiful and like my kind of place! This field of flowers looks stunning, I would love the opportunity to see it but I completely agree with you that we need to take care of our planet better. Most people really do not understand the negative impact we are having on our environment, I really hope we get it before it’s to late 🙁

  9. I love california for this reason! In just one state there is so many different types of landscapes! The flowers-pretty the view-amazing!

  10. Wow, those flowers are so colorful! The Carlsbad Flower Fields is an an attraction I would like to see for myself up close.

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