Joshua Tree National Park in CA - Cholla (Teddybear) cacti, Ocotillo plant in bloom
<Close up picture of a Cholla cactus plant. Next to it a Ocotillo shrub, barely in flower.>
Visitors will find a concentration of vibrant Cholla (or Teddybear) cacti mainly at what's called
the Cholla Cactus Garden which occupies a few square miles. Some of these strange desert succulents like the one below can grow taller than men. Better to stay at a respectful distance,
by the way, else their needles will find your skin and flesh like magnets. Teddybear... If ever
there was a misnomer. All living flowers and plants here seed and prosper naturally in this
rather arrid environment. As does the Ocotillo top right, not yet in full bloom, in a warm late afternoon glow. This hardy desert shrub, not a cactus, is said to survive for up to 200 years in the extreme. When in flower their nectar provides a vital source of energy especially for Hummingbirds.
<Group of Colla cacti with one in the center about 8 feet tall.>
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