Prickly Beauty

I love cactus flowers. They are for me the most arresting sight in the desert. Come springtime, from out of these spiny plants pop up these spectacular flowers. The contrast is remarkable, delicate beauties that seem to float on a bed of thorns.

Mammillaria wiesengeri (Volunteer Park Conservatory, Seattle, WA)
Claret cup cactus, Echinocereus triglochidiatus (Capitol Reef National Park, UT)
White torch cactus, Echinopsis spachiana (Mexican Hat, UT)
Mammilaria wiesengeri (Huntington Library Desert Garden, San Marino, CA)
Mammillaria haageana (Huntington Library Desert Garden, San Marino, CA)
Opuntia engelmannii (Joshua Tree National Park, CA)
Silver torch cactus, Cleistocactus strausii (Huntington Library, San Marino, CA)
Beavertail prickly pear, Opuntia basilaris (Anza-Borrego State Park, CA)

2 thoughts on “Prickly Beauty

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    1. Thanks, Dave. Generally speaking, I avoid the Southwest (where the cacti are in their habitat) during the ‘off’ seasons of summer and winter, so it’s almost a certainty that I will see some blooming specimens in the spring. I never tire of seeing these flowers. Luckily, when I visit my family in the San Gabriel Valley of California, if it’s April or May, the Huntington Library Desert Garden is nearby which has a spectacular collection.

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