I am not a huge fan of the desert. Yes, I know I live here, but as I’ve said before... I prefer trees, flowers. streams. You get the picture. But every year the desert gives us a gift, that comes from a very unlikely place... A Cactus! The beauty of this flower inspired me to take a walk around my neighborhood, and in my backyard, and show you some of the lovely flowers we DO have here in the Southwest. The picture above was taken in a neighbors front yard. I believe it is on some sort of barrel cactus.
This is what the flower looks like when it’s not open.
This is the flower of a Prickly Pear Cactus. (A particularly nasty cactus in my opinion, but with perfectly lovely flowers.)
Unfortunately I waited to long into the season to try and photograph the rest of the cactus that bloom here in the valley, so here are some other lovely flowers, many many are from my own backyard. The plant below is a Mexican Bird of Paradise. It’s colors are so vibrant! In fact most of the flowering plants have very bright colors, which is a good thing because the sun is so intense here it washes out color if it’s not very bright.
Lantana is a bush that I see everywhere in the valley. It’s a super performer and although it does okay in drought like situations, it thrives with just a little bit more water. I especially like the one below. It’s in my flower bed and has so many color variations all in one plant.
This yellow one is on the other side of the bed. It flowers non stop from February until the first hard freeze. (Yes we do get those a few times every year.)
Blue Cape Plumbago is another lovely plant. Unfortunately, it will soon be too hot for it and it will start to die back. Fortunately it will come back to visit next spring!!!
This is some form of Tecoma Sans Yellow Bells. (It must be the orange variety) It is a bush and grows quite large if it’s not pruned.
And last, (but not least) one of my all time favorite summer survivors... Vinca Periwinkle! This little trouper provides blooms all summer long, tolerates the intense heat and bounces back if I forget to water one day. What more could you ask????
Well, that's it. I hope you enjoyed my little walk about this morning!!!