Cactus blooms

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by ezdays, Mar 28, 2006.

  1. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    I don't know how many here think the desert is nothing but sand dunes. There is an area in Calfornia across the river from Yuma, Arizona that is indeed just that. This is where they make most of those Ariabian Desert movies. But the rest of the desert can get really beautiful at the right times of they year, usually after a nice rain. Most cacti are not as bland as you might think. Here are a few pictures I took about an hour ago of a cactus in our side yard. This bloom came out this morning and will last only a day or two before it will whither and fall off. Those little black noduals are more flowers that will come out over the next few weeks, usually only one at a time.

    My wife and I are impressed every time one of our cactuses do this. There are hundreds of species of cactus, this one has a botanical name that would put me over the limit if I posted it. :rolleyes::rolleyes:

    I just thought I'd share a bit of what it's like living in the southwest desert.:wave: :wave:

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  2. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    That's so cool!! :thumb: :thumb: :thumb:

    It needs a G gauge Steam Train riding by in the background.. :wave: :wave: goldtoth1 goldtoth1
  3. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Yeah, you may be right. The yard is full of G scale ballast, so that wouldn't be a problem. What would be though is finding anything but N scale at my house. :D :D
  4. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    Orchid's of the desert :)
  5. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    :wave: :wave: Looks great Don.:thumb: :thumb: My wife and I remember seeing some the last time we went through northern Arizona a few years ago.
  6. davidstrains

    davidstrains Active Member


    My wife raises cactus here in northern VA. We have the flowers at different times of the year and they never cease to amaze me at how beautiful they look. We put ours out doors after May 1.

  7. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    This particular cactus was in a pot on the patio when we lived in Wickenburg. I've got some shots of it when it was less than two few feet tall, where the flower is almost as big as the cactus. We tranplanted it to our yard when we moved here. Those baby cacti around it can be broken off and planted. :eek: Uh, that's my wife's job...:rolleyes: :rolleyes:

    When this blooms again, the flower may be white, but it might come out a deep red, we never know until it blooms. This, of course, is not the only cactus that blooms, but the size of it in relation to the size of the cactus just facinates us.:D
  8. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    if you have any prickly pear, you can make jelly out of the red fruit that grows later. MMM. And the prickly pear "pears" - remove the thorns and skin, and cut them up for salsa.

  9. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    Thats nice Don.
    Adds a little color to a colorless land.
    When I was staying with my father in Apache Junction last August(Thats right...110 deg temps then) I found this flower near a drainage ditch behind my dads house.(What is it Don?)
    The only color, besides the Eclipse wrapper leaning against the fence.

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  10. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    Those are beautiful flowers, Don! I'm also amazed every time when I see a blooming catus. The blossoms are really spectacular.

    Are they pollinated quite normally by bees? Some species of cacti are also pollinated by flies (but then the blossoms stink) or even by small lizards which feed on the pollen. I know that some are even pollinated by bats, but I think that this species is much bigger - about the size of a Saguaro. Wow - wish we had such plants here in Europe, too!

  11. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Beautiful. Cacti were always one of my favourites... 'course they only survive indoors up north here.

    I am sure that Harold Minky will be along soon to tell us how to model those beautiful blooms... ;) Take it away, Harold! :D :D

  12. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way


    That's a boginvilla plant (pronounced: bowginveea). they can grow very tall or even "climb" when they have something to climb up like a wall or trellis. They have a lot of redish flowers just about all year long.


    As far as I know, the bees do all the work. When our cactus or other desert plants bloom we can see the bees all over the place. The saguaro is a very large cactus in comparison to this one, but the flowers on the saguaro are very small in comparison. They bloom at the top of the main trunk and sometimes on the ends of the arms.
  13. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    Don some of the boginvilla's are different colors than red this is i pic of our gold one the flowers gome out dark gold and fade to a pinkish's in it's spring finest now.

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  14. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Some more shots. If you remember in the original pictures the cactus had small black nodes on them. Well, here they are in full bloom.

    So you know how fleeting this is, They were showing signs of blooming on Saturday afternoon. I took this picture around 9:30 Sunday morning and less than five hours later they were already starting to whither. It was in the high 80's then, so that might have hastened the process a bit, but they never last more than a day or two regardless.

    I just thought that someone might find this interesting, that's all. :wave:

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  15. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Oh yeah, the cactus on the left is also in bloom, but it has these spears going up the center with the yellow flower. They grow a few feet and last a lot longer. We have some with red spears that grow five or six feet tall.

    The century plant has a spear that shoots up fifteen or more feet, but they only do that once because the weight of the bloom causes it to topple over. That's why they're called what they are. :D
  16. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    That is so Cool!!! :) :)
  17. Clerk

    Clerk Active Member

    :wave: :wave: Thanks Don. Very interesting. :thumb: :thumb:
  18. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

    Yes, very cool! Now I'd like to see someone take a stab at modelling them.

  19. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    Beautiful blossoms, Don! Thanks for sharing those pics. :wave:

  20. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    Jim Currie had given me an N scale ocotillo cactus he made. I'm saving a spot on my layout to put it on once I get to that point. I should post a picture of it because it is very realistic.:thumb:

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