Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Oh, To Be A Cactus

Cacti sort of have it made.  Who is going to mess with them?  Other than the fact that they must survive the harsh conditions of the desert, they are sheltered, armored, and quick to let a person know who owns their surroundings. 

One of my favorite places near Phoenix is the Desert Botanical Garden.  There are paths and desert expanses all dedicated to our prickly friends, cacti.  Here are a few photos I took while we were there.

I look beautiful, I know I do…see me shine?  Don’t I look lovely to touch?  Come on, touch me…try it…just reach down and feel my smooth, slick hands.

These flowers look perfect and untouched because, well, it’s obvious.  I will hurt you if you reach down here and even try to nab one of these babies!

Come on, hug me.  I’m a teddy bear cactus.  Surely with a name like that I won’t hurt you.  I WON’T HURT YOU! 

Don’t run, we are your friends!  Come on, wade right on in!

 

 

With the armored cacti all around them for protection, other wildflowers thrive in the desert.

Totally self-explanatory.

 

This barrel cactus was so perfect that I wanted one of my very own.  However, I am sure that with my history of planticide preceding me, it would have actually shot its quills at me if I attempted to pick it up.  Yes, I could probably manage to even kill a cactus, which Nancy assures me is totally possible as they need more water than you would think.

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, these were fascinating to me.  I called them “cotton cacti” but later learned the real name then even later forgot it.

 

And that’s a very tiny piece of the tour of the Desert Botanical Garden where the wooden mules and the cacti did roam.  There was also a Monarch butterfly palace deep within the park, and next time I’ll share some pictures of those gorgeous little creatures! 

Until then, careful where you put your hands!  You never know when it might hurt.

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