Spring Wildflowers 2016

Every year, my wife makes an effort to ensure that the wildflowers in our yard reseed successfully.

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As you can see from these views of the front of our house, her efforts have paid off nicely.

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The Ocotillo is a Tucson Cactus and Succulent Society rescue.

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The Parry’s Penstemon, Penstemon parryi, were originally volunteers found close to the street, later augmented with seeds from a neighbor’s plants.

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Early Christmas Present

Oldie but goodie . . .

Oldie but goodie . . .

This became an impromptu Christmas present that would not fit down a chimney.

Night Blooms

We recently experienced a “Blue Moon” that focused our attention on night time activities.

Cereus peruvianus 'Monstrosus'

Cereus peruvianus ‘Monstrosus’ illuminated by a Blue Moon

We are fortunate to have a Cereus peruvianus ‘Monstrosus’ that was a gift from Dave and Heidi when they moved from the neighborhood to the Denver area.  They bloom at night, often fading by the time the sun rises.  After missing at least two earlier night time blooms, we were watching more carefully this time.

Here is the blossom illuminated by a camera flash.

The blossom illuminated by a camera flash

A quick snapshot with a flash, captures more of the detail of the large, but not fragrant blossom.

At sunrise

At sunrise

By early the next morning, the blossom was closing.

Fully closed in the mid-day sunshine

Fully closed in the mid-day sunshine

As the sun rose, the blossom closed completely, never to reopen.

Not yet closed

Not yet closed

A few days later, we noticed this blossom before setting out on an early morning bicycle ride.

Late at night

Late at night

A few nights later, we observed another night blooming.

Night time flash

Night time flash

Here is a wider view that reveals the cactus itself.

A visiting polinator

A visiting pollinator

The blossoms do set fruit eventually developing fleshy fruits with seeds.

A final, colorful close

A final, colorful close

One last look as the blossom closes.