Tucson in the spring and early summer is awash with color when the cacti are in bloom. I thought you would like to see a few shots taken in my yard and neighborhood.
The first photo was taken very early in the morning because the delicate and fragrant bloom of the Organ Pipe Cactus will close as soon as the sun is bright. Unfortunately, this plant, which lived by our pool, was killed in the wicked winter we had. I was lucky to get the bee in this shot, however, these plants are pollenated by bats.
Organ Pipe Cactus Bloom
If you look closely at the photo below, you will see the fishhook spines that protect this cactus. The spines of one of these in our neighborhood cost us $1200 recently when Little Liz, in a fit of barking at a dog behind a wall, went chest first into it, impaling herself in her chest and throat.
Barrel Fishhook Cactus
This Indian Fig Cactus just won't stop growing! Rod has to periodically cut down one side of it so we can get to our gate! The limbs and pads are extremely heavy, since they are filled with water.
Opuntia Ficus Indica blooms
I painted this beautiful bloom and it received a first place ribbon and a judge's award at an exhibition several years ago. When not in bloom, this member of the Cholla family is quite unremarkable, but still quite dangerous if one gets too close!!
Staghorn Cholla Blooms
While visiting here before he became a permanent resident, our son, Keil, dug one of these up in a walk in Honeybee Canyon and gave it to me. It sits in a pot on my patio, and never fails to give me these beautiful blooms.
Hedgehog Cactus Blooms
They're EVERYWHERE you look! But the Prickly Pear cactus not only gives us these beautiful blooms, but also can provide us with jelly when the fruit is picked and cooked. Our granddaughter, Gracie, has harvested quite a few of the fruits with the help of thick gloves and tongs.
Prickly Pear Cactus
The buds of the Giant Saguaro are harvested by the local Indian tribes. I would never attempt to harvest any because I have a fear of heights!!
I have had this Old Man Cactus for many years. It lives in a clay cactus garden on my patio. A couple of others in this grouping have died from the cold, but this one just keeps hanging on, although I suspect that that he is shrinking with age, and may get much smaller. He used to be a lot bigger when he was younger. That's just the way life is, isn't it??? Old age eventually wins out! Hahahahahahaha!!!!!!
Old Man Cactus
Well, that's it for my Alphabe-Thursday assignment from Miss Jenny, our teacher! I am still on vacation, but as soon as I get home, I will be reading all the other offerings!!