Monday, August 4, 2014

Saguaro and Crested Saguaro near Congress and Tucson Arizona

Before leaving Arizona this Spring we spent a lot of time out in the desert and we continue to be amazed at the number, size and shapes of the Saguaros we find.  The first four pictures are taken at the Saguaro National Park near Tucson Arizona where we went with good friends.
Just one small hillside with more Saguaro than you could even think about counting. 
We arrived a little early in the season but some of them are starting to bloom at the tops.

The bees just love the flowers so there has to be lots there for them to collect.

Some with arms and some reaching for the sky.  We would guess over 30' tall.

Back closer to home (Congress) we took a ride with our quad out in the desert and found this rare Crested Saguaro.

Taken from the internet so it's not our writing but it does give a little insight into the following pictures.

"The magnificent Saguaro Cactus grows only in the 120,000 square mile area of the Sonoran Desert in the southwestern US and northern Mexico. It is arguably one of the most recognized natural wonders of Arizona.
A rare condition that affects roughly one in every 200,000 appears like a fan-like abnormality. These are known as “Crested Saguaros.” The cause of this deformity, which sometimes resembles a burl on trees, is unknown. Theories include everything from lighting strikes to genetic abnormalities. The most widely accepted explanation is that cresting is caused by damage to the apex of the plant, either from some sudden trauma or by freezing. The crest doesn’t seem to harm the saguaro, which can continue to produce flowers and fruit."

A little closer view.

On another day we took a hike with a guide near Stanton Arizona, an old ghost town where there are several Crested Saguaros spread out over several acres.

This one is called the Elephant, complete with curled trunk.

Nothing crested here but a lot of new arms trying to grow.

Not the same from the back but interesting.  There are several more in the area but it was time to head back and find some shade.

And near the base of one of the Saguaro was a very unique spiders nest.

To be continued...

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