Sunday, May 05, 2013

Tucson Spring



 I think we appreciate spring in Tucson more than other places in the country. Oh, that's not to say that places like Minnesota (Snow? In May? Really?) or Maine or New York don't celebrate the arrival of warmer weather, new growth, and birds singing happily in the morning. But, in the desert, the predominant color is brown, highlighted by muted greens. In the spring, everything blooms.

Today I'm featuring photos taken with my iPhone on my morning walks these past two weeks. I have no idea what the name of the first plant (above) is, but the number of blooms and the deep green was just gorgeous.
This pink bloom, sheltered among the cactus, really caught my eye.

This is a cholla cactus, sometimes referred to as the jumping cholla for the tendency of bits of it to get attached to your clothing on a walk through the desert.

Another nameless yellow flower.

This is a tumbleweed, already losing some of its glory. I know because I was fooled by three of them in my back yard last spring. They pop up as very pretty green bushes covered in purple flowers. I debated whether to let them grow or pull them out. I made the wrong decision. By mid-summer, they were masses of tangled brown branches. Definitely weeds.

An ocotilla. Most of the year, these are bunches of brown sticks. In the spring they're covered in tiny green leaves and show these glorious orange blossoms. Ocotilla branches are often used for decorative fencing in Tucson.

More lovely color by the roadside.

Even the fence can't hold back this beautiful bloomer.

Later this month, the saguaro cactus will start blooming. And, when the monsoons come, we'll get that marvelous perfume of the creosote bush in the air. I love the desert.
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