the wandering chick
...Desert Botanical Garden
It's spring time in Phoenix

The Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix is a great place to spend a pleasant spring day meandering along paths lined with every desert cacti imaginable...and many that aren't.

Every time I go, I feel I'm there for the first time because it changes with each season. The cacti are year round, faithful and loyal friends that you can be sure will be there to greet you, no matter the season.

But on this visit, Spring enveloped the air and cast around us a plethora of hues, both bright and subtle. It brought out curious wildlife that normally cares not to be seen. It put cheery little blossoms on the otherwise colorless cacti and it presented an abundance of richness and vitality in its many trees anxious and proud to spread their blooming limbs.

The Desert Botanical Garden is located in downtown Phoenix adjacent to the zoo.

tree in bloom
spring flowers
spring flowers
floor cacti
cacti in bloom
cactus
bunny ears prickly pear
There are many varities of prickly pear, and this one is called Bunny Ears Prickly Pear.
spring flowers
dove on nest
Even the most delicate of birds find a way to snuggle into a thorny cactus to build their nests.
round-tailed ground squirrel
spring flowers
This round-tailed ground squirrel had obviously been fed by humans. He didn't hesitate to run up to us hoping for a handout.
paper spine cholla
gambel's quail
It's always interesting to learn of new plants. This paper spine cholla is one I had never seen before.
The call of the Gambel's quail could be heard throughout the park on this particular day.
Sometimes oddities occur for reasons unknown. This is a crested saguaro, so named because of its crest-like shape. Also called Cristates, they are quite rare, and scientists have not yet come up with a cause for the mutations. The same one is below.
crestated saguaro
crested saguaro
trees blooming in yellow
lizard
trees in bloom
This lizard came wandering out of the bushes and caught the attention of nearby photographers.
closeup of thorned tree with yellow leaves
spring landscape
Madagascan Ocotillo, a close-up
spring flowers
spring flowers
If you're interested in viewing pictures of a prior trip to the Desert Botanical Garden, click here.

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