Wowza: Pacific Grove's Magic Carpet

The incredibly colorful flowers get to bursting around the start of April.

SATURATED SIGHT: Even if you're a devout wordsmith, and someone who can pull out a whole plethora of beautiful ways to describe the most delicate of snowflakes and the most dramatic of sunsets, it can be a challenge to accurately capture, in summary, how an ocean-adjacent ice plant looks when it is in full and magnificent bloom. "Color plus more color and some other color, too" kind of captures the general sense of saturation the flowers give off, as if can after can of neon pink paint, the kind that's so bright it can be seen in the dark, has been added to the petals. But nature is behind this particular paintbrush, and it is a sight that is very much associated with Pacific Grove when the first full month of springtime starts up. And any calendar can tell you that April is nearly here, which means it'll soon be ice plant time along certain coastal spots.

PROPS FOR PURPLE, TOO: Of course, pink isn't the only startlingly drench-worthy shade that the ice plants take on; deeper purples, too, make a showing, and lighter lavenders, depending on the plant and place. And if you want to see what's been charmingly dubbed "the magic purple carpet," heading out to the Monterey Bay Coastal Recreation Trail is a truly fine idea. And, no, you don't need to be out promptly at sunrise on April 1 to see the ice plant bloom in action (no foolin'). While early April is the general start time, the eye-popping petals can keep on keepin' on right up to Memorial Day Weekend. Want to get a sense of what the scene is in Pacific Grove, if you're headed there specifically to admire ice plants? Check in with the visitors bureau for the up-to-the-day report.

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