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Atacama Desert, Driest Place on Earth, Blooms With Millions of Pink Flowers

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By    |   Friday, 30 Oct 2015 08:11 AM

Chile's Atacama Desert, known as the driest place on earth, has bloomed with millions of tiny pink flowers after experiencing unusually heavy rainfalls earlier this year.

"The Atacama region was punished, but also blessed by the phenomenon of a flourishing desert, something that happens only after the rains" said Chile’s National Tourism Service director, Daniel Diaz, according to The Telegraph U.K.

"It is a unique experience and we take the opportunity to document the ecosystem’s dynamics, to observe how flowers live, and to catalogue them."

Chile expects that roughly 20,000 visitors will flock to the desert this year to see the flowers, which will likely be gone again by the end of November.

The flowers are known as malva, or mallow, and they typically bloom every five to seven years.

"The intensity of blooms this year has no precedent," Diaz told reporters. "We are surprised."

According to The Washington Post, Atacama holds the world record for the longest dry streak: 173 consecutive months with no rain, a spell recorded early last century. 

This March, however, one El Nino-related thunderstorm brought nearly an inch of rain to a large swath of the desert. That 0.96 inches was the equivalent of the rain it typically experiences over 14 years, causing flooding along the Copiapo River that killed nine.

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Chile's Atacama Desert, known as the driest place on earth, has bloomed with millions of tiny pink flowers after experiencing unusually heavy rainfalls earlier this year.
atacama desert, pink, flowers, driest, place, earth
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2015-11-30
Friday, 30 Oct 2015 08:11 AM
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