Along SLO CAL’s trails and backroads, wildflowers bloom. The springtime hills and fields burst to life in vivid colors, but wildflowers can also be found in unexpected places like in locally crafted bath products, pick your own flower farms, the produce beds of local hotel gardens and more. Read on to learn about some of the unexpected places to find wildflowers in SLO CAL (San Luis Obispo County).

Off the Wall - Wildflower Murals

Back to Top of List

Catch two dimensional flowers on the side of the Slabtown Mercantile shop in Cambria or on the Marsh Street bridge in San Luis Obispo. These two murals pay homage to the flora that fill the local fields after the winter rain.

Both pieces of public art feature native wildflowers including the California poppy and purple lupine (among others). The Slabtown mural depicts each flower’s common and its Latin name, while the location of the bridge mural makes the flower stalks appear to be growing out of the creek bed below. Both are worth a visit!

For more murals in SLO CAL, check out the self-guided mural trail here.

Restaurants & Bars

Back to Top of List

Lavender cocktail from aboveIn SLO CAL, whatever you order on your plate and in your glass is sure to be delicious. You’ll find top rated wineries and Michelin Star restaurants that focus on true farm to glass and farm to table dining. Many utilize local flowers alongside other local produce in their offerings.

Looking for floral notes in your cup or on your plate? Head to Alchemists' Garden where edible flowers and microgreens accompany their food dishes and cocktails garnishes are bright and blooming. These touches transform their menu into something extra special.

Looking for a spot that caught the eyes of the Michelin Guide? Find your way to In Bloom, in Paso Robles, where the freshest ingredients are highlighted. Periodically, they also host wine, bloom and bite events where attendees can create their own floral arrangement with foods prepared and paired by In Bloom.

For a full list of places to eat & drink in SLO CAL click here.

Secret Gardens

Back to Top of List

“Wild” flowers take on a different meaning at these local gardens where visitors can appreciate intentionally planted flowers. Walk amongst the blooms, as well as seasonal vegetables and fruit at local wineries: take a stroll through the chef garden at Niner or explore the 26-acre farmstead where Michelin-starred restaurant at Justin grows their ingredients.

Go on an off the beaten path adventure to find Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort’s secret garden. Don’t know where to start? Here’s a hint: there are access points by the hotel’s footbridge or from the Bob Jones trail. And don’t miss Hotel Cerro’s rooftop edible garden where they grow items for their craft cocktails – including some of the most elaborate floral garnishes you’ll find in SLO CAL.

Flower Fields & U-Pick

Back to Top of List

Girl picking pink and white flowersFresh cut at the market or u-pick from the flower farm, colorful stems and bouquets are readily available to make the day in SLO CAL even brighter. Farmermaid is a local sustainable flower farm, who’s arrangements can be found at local grocery stores and at their Downtown San Luis Obispo Thursday Night Farmers’ Market stall. Their flowers are not only beautiful but grown with care using regenerative agriculture practices.

For those who would like to pick their own florals, head to Avila Valley Barn. They offer a variety of pick your own produce from berries, apples and pumpkins to a variety of stems. Their flower season is July – October when visitors are invited to cut and design their own bouquet from the flower field. Arriving later in the season? SLO Creek Farms also offers a u-pick flower options September – November.

If lavender is your flower of choice, Hambly Lavender Farm in San Miguel is calling your name! Hambly offers lavender products, tours of the farm, u-pick opportunities and workshops (including how to grow your own lavender). The lavender season runs May through fall.

Strawberries are also grown and always popular in SLO CAL. These ruby gems can be found around the County (March – September), but the Arroyo Grande Valley is especially known for producing some of the best fruit in the area. Okui Strawberry and Fruit Stand opens every spring – official timing based on the growing season. They carry the Albion variety of strawberries and sell their wares at the stand located in front of their strawberry fields. Halcyon Farms is open year-round and often offers u-pick strawberries early in the season.

SLO CAL Crafted Items

Back to Top of List

SLO CAL has long been home to the highest quality of local farmers, crafters and artists. The SLO CAL Crafted certification is a way to recognize the products that have been grown and produced here in San Luis Obispo County.

Many of these artisans are based in agriculture or use plant ingredients in their works. For example, 805 Botanicals in Atascadero creates natural products for your skin and home out of natural ingredients. These include local olive oil, beeswax, fragrance and more. Couleur de la Vie creates natural hand dyed textiles using plant and organic materials. While perusing their fabric products, remember that local flower pedals may be the cause of that silk scarf’s vibrant color!

For a full list of SLO CAL Crafted businesses click here.

Wildflower Viewing

Back to Top of List

Girl visiting the wildflowers in SLO CALCome discover wildflower blooms in SLO CAL. After you explored our list of unexpected places to find wildflowers, read more about the best locations to find spring flowers in the wild - including in Carrizo Plain National Monument, along Highway 1 and near Santa Margarita. It's always a good time to plan your wildflower itinerary to San Luis Obispo County.