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Sunday, March 15, 2015

Spring's Springing

Hiking in shadow along the western flank of Tortugas (Tortoise) Mountain
We've been flirting with temperatures near 70 F (21 C) here in the northern Chihuahuan Desert, with pleasant nighttime temps in the low forties (4.5 C).  The days have been warm enough to encourage Torrey Yuccas to begin their blooming process, and the plants have sent up flower stalks all around Tortugas Mountain, a mountain sacred to the nearby Tortugas Pueblo tribe.  "Tortugas" is Spanish for "tortoise," and from a distance the mountain has the distinct shape of a land-dwelling turtle.
Seeking sunshine

About to cross through a deep arroyo

Torrey Yucca sending up its flower stalk

Flowers beginning to unfold

Curve-billed Thrasher

Sounding like a Mockingbird (see video below)

Yuccas breaking out in flower

Yucca flowers were considered a delicacy by some Native Americans

The flowers are chewy and sweet

Getting at them to eat can be a thorny problem

Claret Cup Hedgehog Cactus budding

This Torrey Yucca is nearly ten-feet tall

On the mountain's steep slope

Search for heavenly objects

The flowers are not part of the Prickly Pear Cactus

1 comment:

Dr. K said...

I love the unfolding yucca flowers and the beautiful birdsong. A great way to start the week.

Hump Day Hawk

Tortugas and the Organs We got a fairly early start this morning so it wasn't hot at all:  62F.  The cloud cover helped the temperature ...