Johnson Valley News 03/15/2019

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• Yesterday morning, traveling west on Hwy 247, we saw green everywhere. In Johnson Valley, only a few pompoms of sand verbena had started up on the roadside. The big surprise, which we have never seen before, began in the flatlands as you approach Deadman’s Point on Hwy 18. We were looking for it, but it still amazed us.

I believe it might be
Purple Mat. The flowers look reddish-purple, vivid blankets of them
cover every speck of low ground. Anywhere brush had been cleared, these
very low-growing, tiny flowers painted the sand a solid color. This show
continued for miles. We turned onto Bear Valley cutoff, and the plants
occupied even the vacant lots between buildings and houses as we arrived
in the outskirts of Victorville.

Coming home after 2:00, the
show was over. It seems all those millions of tiny flowers closed up as
the sun got higher in the sky.

I know Purple Mat grows in Johnson
Valley, if that’s what this was, but we have seen nothing like this
display. We could not stop to examine the flowers closely, but they
definitely are purple and have five petals. That area has had much more
rain than fell on JV, and it warms up sooner. Maybe we can hope for a
later-arriving bloom.

Please send me locations of flowers you see, to share on the JV NEWS. Leave a message
CAUTION! ALERT! Wildflower touring definitely qualifies as distracted driving!
Just as we spotted the first of the purple flowers, the guy in front of
us slammed on his brakes to turn off the road. BE CAREFUL!

Reminder, many Johnson Valley flower pictures are posted at Click on each photograph to see if it has an album of views of the plant and flower close-ups.

• Spring brings out flowers and roadworkers.

California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will be closing the D
Street on and off ramps into Victorville on Interstate 15 (I-15) in
both directions for ten days, from Friday morning, March 15th, 5:00 a.m. lasting until Monday morning, March 25th at 6:00 a.m.

D Street itself will stay open for through traffic during the ramp closure. Remember to reduce your speed in all work zones.

(Be advised, closures are subject to change due to inclement weather.)


Caltrans will also close eight miles of State Route 247 (Old Woman
Springs Road) in both directions to work on a concrete overlay project
approximately four miles long.

This shutdown starts at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, March 29. Re-opening is at 6:00 a.m. Monday morning, April 1.

section from Bessemer Mine Road, just past Old Woman Springs Ranch, up
to Camp Rock Road in Lucerne Valley can carry no traffic while the
roadwork goes on; no detours are possible, no way around it.

hope the weather stays right for the roadworkers. As Chuck Bell said,
that stretch of road is terrible and can’t wait much longer.

The County alert reads: Please reduce your speed in the work zone.
Know before you go! To stay on top of roadwork in the Inland Empire go to and sign up for commuter alerts.  View traffic conditions at and lane closures at


See the flyer attached for what to take, and what not to take this
Saturday, March 16, 9:00 am.-Noon. The headline says “Lucerne Valley
Residents,” but we can go, too.

At this annual event, the County
helps the Lucerne Valley volunteers so they can accept more than at the
usual collections – everything on that list in the left column.

takes less than a half-hour to drive there from Johnson Valley. Go west
on Hwy 247; you’ll see the station on your left as you enter Lucerne

• Plan to be
here for the Johnson Valley Spring Dinner, a feast including ham and
potatoes, salad and fabulous desserts. Everyone is invited, Saturday, April 6th.
7.00 per person; kids 12 and younger 4.00.
Doors open at 4:30 p.m and dinner is at 6:00.

after dinner for the latest news and announcements, and the last JVIA
general meeting until June. (No meeting in May because of the Cinco de
Mayo Fiesta Open House that first Saturday.)

 • JVIA members receive the Johnson Valley Journal six times a year.
JV NEWS e-mail keeps you up to date between Journals, including stories
and information published in the weekly community news columns in the
Hi-Desert Star. If you prefer not to receive these e-mails, just reply
and say Cancel.

is welcome to every event at the Center! Johnson Valley Improvement
Association members or non-members may join in on scheduled activities
and special events!

Regularly-scheduled events:
Saturday Breakfast, 7:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m.
Dinner, every 1st Saturday at 5:00 p.m. followed by the General Meeting

Board Meeting, on Friday following the 1st Saturday, 6:00 p.m.
Card Club on Tuesdays, noon-4:00 p.m.
Hobby Club on Wednesdays 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m, except the 4th Wednesday; they come in on the 4th Friday, 10:00 a.m.
Quilters every 4th Wednesday, 9:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

events: the Homestead Valley Community Council holds its regular
meeting here three times a year on the third Monday, at 3:00 p.m. The
next will be in June and October. (These meetings rotate among the four
Homestead Valley community centers in Flamingo Heights, Yucca Mesa, and
Landers, then back to Johnson Valley. None are very far apart, easy to
get to from here on Hwy 247. Next HVCC meeting, this Monday, March 18, #;00 p.m. at the Flamingo Heights Community Center.)

events: Cinco de Mayo Fiesta, May 4, and Oktoberfest, October 12,
usually begin in the afternoons, includes a dinner. No General Meetings
those months.

The Center and the
Garden are available for your birthday celebrations, family gatherings,
weddings. JVIA asks for a donation to cover overheads and that you leave
the place as you found it. Check with me for availability.

Paul Van Hook Desert Dreams Garden, next to the Community Center parking
lot, is thriving, plants and trees and all the greenery all over the
ground!. The model railway crew will have a lot of track- clearing to do
before running those trains!

Caution: Always make sure kids stay outside the Garden Railway layout at any time; tracks and town buildings are not toys!

trains may run any Saturday, and maybe at other times, too. Ask when
you come to Saturday Breakfast, 7:00-10:00 a.m. if the trains are
running that day.

• Ride on! Temperatures
have been mild. You may expect the usual west winds and occasional
showers, but you could not ask for better days to explore the trails in
the Johnson Valley OHV Area just across the highway. Take pictures,
please – skies, flowers, rock formations, junior off-roaders, family
trail riding – and e-mail them to me.

Ask for your Sidekick
Offroad Map of the Johnson Valley OHV Area when you come to the
Community Center. You get a detailed topographical map, a Guide to the
original Hammers trails, general information, and off-road tips. The
folding paper map is 3:00. The silkscreened Bandanna Map is 8.00 (very
handy, no folding, tie it around your neck or to a tube on the roll

Navigating by GPS? – find your way to the Community Center:
34.3424938     -116.56066880000003.

through the community roads is not necessary when headed to or from the
Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle Area. Go straight down the nearest
road to the highway, cross directly over the highway legally to use the
dirt trail that parallels the north side of Hwy 247.

If you come up Larrea Road while in or on a green-sticker vehicle, travel on the dirt alongside the pavement.

take it easy on the dirt roads, any speed, any vehicle, street-legal or
not, going over 25mph does a lot of damage to dirt roads. Delivery
vehicles and the trash truck do the worst, but OHVs get the blame. We
have a shortage of volunteers to do tractor work and drag the roads.
Also, when they get dry and dusty, dragging does not help much. No
County maintenance here, just your neighbors.

Remember, noise can carry, and dust can drift a long way.

Johnson Valley Community Center
50567 Quailbush Rd.
Johnson Valley CA 92285

From Hwy 247, turn onto Larrea Rd,
go 1-3/4 miles up to Quailbush Rd. You see the building on your left at the corner.
Betty Munson

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