Jun 28 2010

Saguaro Flower Power

Melissa Crytzer Fry

I admit it. I’m in love with the saguaro cactus – from its stately arms, behemoth size and prickly spines to its exquisite white flowers. And did you know that the saguaro is only found in Arizona’s Sonoran desert … nowhere else in the world? How great is that?

This curved-bill thrasher enjoys picking ants (pollinators of the flowers) and bugs from the newly opened saguaro flowers.

There’s something magical about late spring when the saguaros bloom. As they begin to bud, flowers crop up on the very tops, looking like unruly dreadlocks (The saguaro wears the hairstyle well. I love it).

When the flowers finally open, from a distance they look somewhat mechanical, with crisp edges, perfectly formed spheres and a ramrod-straight tube poking out of each. They kind of remind me of Claymation (those of you not old enough to know what that is, think of Mr. Bill. Or even the California raisins.). So, yes, they kind of look like perfectly formed clay, soft and pliable.

Nature’s ability to engineer something so flawless and streamlined, so delicate and so functional is quite breathtaking.

For Writers: What inspires you to write? Obviously nature ignites my creativity, even though the fiction I write is character-focused and dramatic – not focused solely on nature. There’s just something about sitting among trees, open fields, skies – letting the natural world happen around you as you observe. Even taking in the sights and sounds in a park for 10 minutes can inspire. You should try it if you haven’t already.


6 Responses to “Saguaro Flower Power”

  • avatar Geoff Says:

    I have and will continue myself. Sunday after church. In Orlando at Lake Eola park. The Swans carry on the tradition of the beggar. The huge white feathered bodies actually come out of the water and waddle up to sit next to me. Maybe it’s the Panera treat but I think the treat is just a bonus

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    Melissa Reply:

    They sound beautiful! Wonderful description of your interaction with them. if you’re handing out Panera treats, I might be interested, too :-).

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  • avatar Jessica McCann Says:

    Seeing the saguaro in bloom is one of my favorite parts of spring. I love that they sit high atop the cactus, out of reach of man. We can appreciate them only from a distance and feel a twinge of jealousy of the birds who get a close-up view. Your photo captures their beauty perfectly.

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    Melissa Reply:

    Jessica,
    I couldn’t agree more. I’m still trying to figure out how people pick the fruit when it can sometimes be up to 12 feet (or higher) in the air!

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  • avatar geoff veit Says:

    The 29th and 30th are missing. Cough ’em up.

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    Melissa Reply:

    Glad to know you enjoy my posts, Geoff. I’m new to the “technical” side of blogging and have a new post ready for today -but am not sure how to turn my video into audio-only and place it on the site. Hold tight! Might not post every day -but aiming for 3xs a week! Keep writing, yourself!

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