This is the month of April, or Aprilis, which is a Latin word meaning, “to bud.” However, Aprilis is also derived from the Greek Aphrodite. Meaning that this month was named after both budding flowers and the goddess of love and war. Let’s take a step back and take in the changes of the season.
According to Greek mythology, Atlas holds the weight of the Heavens upon his back as punishment for leading the titans against Zeus. The Sun is driven across the sky by Helios in his four-horse-drawn chariot. The seasons change because Persephone was kidnapped by Hades and he married her under a specific condition from her mother, Demeter the god of the earth. The agreement between Hades and Demeter was that she would stay in the underworld for four months of the year, but she was allowed to spend the remaining two-thirds of the year with her mother, in Olympus. When Persephone is in the underworld with Hades, Demeter is sad and this makes the earth colder, wetter, and plants begin to wilt and die. When Her daughter is returned, Demeter becomes happy, bringing life and warmth back to the land. When Persephone returns, Demeter's excitement and joy for the reunion make many plants bloom flowers, and grow strong.
Well, folks, it is that time of year again. Persephone has returned to Olympus and with her return brings wildflowers. In California, we are blessed with being called the Golden State. Some may claim it is due to the gold rush, but others know the real reason is that California has hills of dead annual grasses and the abundant California Poppy that is found throughout the entire state. Here are a few magnificent places nearby to be able to see many of the most abundant wildflowers in our great state.