The prettiest plant blooming today was the ocotillo. This plant can reach heights to 20 ft. and can live 60 to 100 years.
The Ocotillo is called many different things including Candlewood, Slimwood and Coachwhip.
We did spot a hedgehog cactus in bloom. Like the hedgehog itself, it is covered in spiky "quills". It is one of the cactus varieties that feature bright-colored flowers.
I think this is a Buckhorn Cholla. It has a whole bunch of spines in each cluster on the stem.
Chain Fruit Cholla are a large tree-like cactus which can grow to a height of 12 ft. or more.
The blooms are white and about 3 inches in diameter. They have a strong smell...described as an overripe melon. This Saguaro was way too tall for me to get a sniff.
During the day, the flowers are pollinated by bees and birds and at night by the bats. I just happened to get this picture of a Gila Woodpecker. As the first picture shows there were two stems. I snapped just as he flew from one to the other.
He was sure doing his job today! After the flowers have been pollinated they mature into bright red fruit. When the fruit ripens, it splits open showing juicy red pulp. Each fruit can contain up to 2,000 small black seeds.
Saguaro flowers bloom for less than 24 hours. They open at night and remain open through the next day. They only have that very short time to attract an animal to be pollinated. It was for sure my lucky day!
The Taylors sure had another wonderful day...hope you did as well. Thanks for visiting today!
Y'all come back!