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Superbloom: How Death Valley Springs to Life

Death Valley is the driest place in the United States and is known as the hottest place on Earth (though there are places that are hotter). On top of that, average rainfall is less than 2 inches (5 cm). How can a place like that yield beautiful superblooms of desert wildflowers?

Some call it a “beautiful revolution against the tyranny of the desert,” while others simply refer to it as a “super bloom.”

Science Friday visits with Death Valley Park Ranger Alan Van Valkenburg to find out how this harsh landscape’s secret seed bank springs to life after heavy rains.

desert superbloom
Next, visit more deserts: Mars Society’s Mars Desert Research Station, Paragliding Above Extreme Desert Sands, and a lesson in biomimicry: Can Namib Desert beetles help us solve our drought problems?

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