Sunday, October 24, 2021

Late September in the Desert Botanical Garden

Late last month, Denis and I visited the Desert Botanical Garden. Temperatures were still at the 100°F. mark, and I didn't expect there to be much in the way of flowers. The fantastic thing about the garden is that you can have an absolutely wonderful time and not see a single blossom.

I was wrong about the flowers, so let me share some photos that I took that day.

The first thing we saw were blooms on the barrel cacti. The ones that have already flowered look like little pineapples, don't they?

Due to the monsoon rains, I also saw bumper crops of prickly pear fruits.

Barrel cactus blossoms

This fishhook barrel cactus was getting ready to flower, too.

This curve-billed thrasher was busy eating berries.

A Queen butterfly on lantana.

A ground squirrel eating cholla fruit.

Blanket flowers


Desert Roses

At the Patio Cafe. Have you ever seen striped tree trunks?

Now you have!

A ground squirrel posing for me at the Patio Cafe.

Possibly the prettiest cactus flower of them all that day.

I hope you enjoyed your visit!


  1. How absolutely gorgeous, Cathy! I love the way you see those small bits of beauty. And those ground squirrels are so adorable! Interesting they're bold enough to come right up to the café!

    1. They're bold enough to come right up to your feet!

  2. The cactus flowers are gorgeous--at a safe distance and the squirrels are charming. Thanks for the vicarious visit!

  3. I love the photos but I also love that you know what all these plants are.

    1. My grandmother was passionate about flowers, and I absorbed a lot of information from her. Also, I always want to know the names of things, so I have quite the reference library here. There's nothing like going out on a trail in the spring when all the wildflowers are in bloom and having your husband and best friend keep pointing ones out and saying, "What's the name of this one, Cathy?" "Do you know what this one is, Cathy?" Until I got acclimated, there was a lot of photos taken so I could come home and look them up.

  4. It is amazing how much color there is in the desert! Great pictures. I love those ground squirrels. We have chipmunks that sit on our deck nibbling on seeds and berries perched just like those ground squirrels you captured on film. They are so fun to watch!

  5. The crepe myrtles that are ubiquitous in my area shed their bark every spring, so they go through a phase when the old is peeling off to reveal the new. That gives them a striped aspect that came to mind when I saw your photos, but they're not always as evenly 'striped.' What kind of trees are those?

    1. You know... I don't remember! I'll have to make a point of finding out the next time we're there.

  6. Wow. Wow. Wow. Always amazing and beautiful to see these cactus flowers, and the squirrels, of course.

    How lucky you are to live so close to this wonderful place with life popping up all around.


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