I was told by the nursery man who sold us this cactus several years ago that it's called Argentine Giant. It appears to be a very fast growing cactus and seems to like it's space just outside our pool gate. This is the first year it has bloomed. When we first arrived in Surprise on April 10, it looked like this:
|You can just see the buds on the large stem.|
|The buds are much larger|
|Beautiful buds just ready to open|
In our front yard, we have a bottle brush tree which was in full bloom with beautiful red blossoms in the shape of bottle brushes.
|A close-up of one of the blossoms alongside a branch ready to bloom.|
|Mickey up close and personal getting the best shots possible of the bottle brush.|
At the side of the house we have a spreading prickly pear variety of cactus. It is just loaded with buds, some of which opened up for us before we left.
The flowers are remarkably fragile looking with ultra thin petals. Both yellow and orange blossoms grew on the same plant.
Beside the bottle brush bush we have a desert morning glory. This would take up the whole yard if we didn't have it trimmed back regularly.
The pristine white flowers close up every evening and open with the sun in the morning.
We were almost too late to see this one. It grows at the back of our pool. I forget the name of it. The flowers look like giant versions of lily-of-the-valley. They were past their prime when we arrived but still looked beautiful.
And this one is at the tip top of one of the branches of the ocatillo (stick tree). It grew quite a bit more while we were there, extending to about six inches of red blossom at the tips of the branches. When we got this tree it looked like a bunch of sticks bundled together and it stayed that way for a year before it leafed out and started blooming. It's quite beautiful and attracts the hummingbirds.
We have a couple of these bushes in the back yard. I don't know what they're called either but they get filled with bright orange blossoms.
This is the tip top of one of our huge saguaros. Those little knobs up there are the buds. Someday I'll be there when they're open. They'll be beautiful white flowers crowning the top of the cactus.
I don't know what these trees are either, but they're everywhere and so bright and cheerful.
It was very windy when we took these pictures so you can't see the details of the flowers.
So that was our little spot on the flowering desert. It's really a very beautiful place to be in April.