Sunday, July 30, 2017

Arizona Adventure Pt.3

Connor was going to be in Arizona a bit longer than I was because of his conference. So while it wasn't his last day in Arizona, it was mine. We met up with Brennan again (Sydney was at work) and went to the Tucson Botanical Gardens. There were just as many interesting critters around as there were plants.

After touring, we all sat down so that Brennan and I could paint a little. Brennan had been my art buddy back in college, so it was fun to be able to "art" again. I plopped down by the Mexican Fire Barrel to start with.

There were more than cacti to see at the garden, but I found the large variety rather inspiring.

It was sad to leave Brennan, but we had to drop him off so we could get back to Phoenix for the conference. Although, along our way, we stopped by the Casa Grande ruins. The Casa Grande ruins consists of a four story house that was built out of mud loaded with calcium carbonate. That made it stronger, but not immune to rain. A roof has since been built to help preserve the structure.

Around the grounds were lots of neat plants. I'm sure those of you from Arizona won't be nearly as impressed as I was, but I had never seen some of these plants. I didn't know that Prickly Pears could have any purple in them. I'd only seen the plain green kind.

I'd never seen a Palo Verde before this trip. When Connor and I first landed in Phoenix, we had a discussion over whether or not the bark had been spray painted; the green was so vibrant.
It turns out that the bark can perform photosynthesis even when the tree has no leaves

My favorite was the Ocotillo. It is sometimes used as a living fence. Often it doesn't have the green leaves, it just looks like spiney sticks. But after Brennan described them as Cthulhu emerging from the ground, that was all I could see. They all look like tentacle monsters to me now. Thanks, Brennan.

Of course while we were out and about in Arizona, we procured a few more patches and magnets for our collection. I've updated the patch map accordingly.

Even though I was only there for a few days, I came back feeling refreshed. It was good to see such a different landscape than I am used to.


Alicia said...

I've never visited the desert but I love how different the plant life is there. Thanks for sharing!

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