Blooming cactus

The first bloom from this remarkable plant occurred just as I left for my long New Mexico weekend trip — I missed it entirely, returning to see a pitiful shriveled stalk where before I’d seen an enormous incipient bud.

Lipstick vogue

Lipstick vogue

Anne reported that a rainstorm the very day of the bloom had filled the cup with water and more or less knocked it over, abbreviating its already short livespan.

bursting forth

bursting forth

It took two more weeks for the remaining buds to open, and this time I was ready to document them.

Crimson trio

Crimson trio

Oddly, another rain event occurred on the very day of the blooming — the first one here in N TX since the storm that had knocked down the earlier bloomstalk.

Mysteries of the organism

Mysteries of the organism

I took great pains to lift the potted cactus and carry it carefully to the back porch, where it would be protected from the impending downpour — which, naturally, never actually happened.

This morning I see that the blooms are already beginning to wither – they apparently have only about a two-three day lifespan under any circumstances.

B&W view

B&W view

All the more reason to keep that camera handy — you never know what’s going to show up in your own backyard.


14 thoughts on “Blooming cactus

    • It’s my pleasure barneysday. Here in Texas we’re pretty used to seeing prickly pears blooming, but this guy is a more unusual sort. (Not sure it’s even a native – I picked it up a couple of years ago at Home Depot, and repotted it in a large planter. Couldn’t tell you for sure the variety – echinocereus, maybe?)

  1. So fun to see plants from other parts of the country – these are so interesting and striking! I’m glad you were there to capture them this time.

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