Tag Archives: desert


After Combseed, one of the next wildflowers to start showing up is Fillaree (Erodium cicutarium) and they are now out in full force almost everywhere.


I always carry a Canon 500D Close Up Lens for the times when a lens won’t focus close enough. No reduction in exposure time makes it a better choice for a “hand holder” like me. Extension tubes or teleconverters might get me closer but besides losing an f/stop or two in light, you risk getting dust on the sensor because you have to remove the lens to attach them.

Cropped section of image shot using 500D close-up lens.
bee on fillaree bloom

Finally, here’s an image showing red Fillaree leaves. Someone had asked me if it was a different plant but the red is a result of stress during very cold weather. Once again, I attached the 500D Close Up Lens to get this close.
red fillaree leaves

(Note: the extreme close-ups were cropped from originals)

wildflower sighting in north preserve

The North end of the Preserve is beginning to bloom! We spotted Combseed (Pectocarya penicillata) in the Rock Knob/Marcus Slide area of the Preserve this afternoon. I think of this teeny tiny white flower as the first wildflower of the season. Next to bloom will be Cryptantha and Fiddleneck which are already several inches tall. A freeze is still possible but we’re thinking positively!

Combseed (Pectocarya penicillata) is so tiny (note the decomposed granite), you won’t notice it at first glance.

Combseed flower
combseed flower


This is the first time I’ve seen a Saguaro with this many arms in their beginning stage. Pretty cool. Now that I know where it is, I could track its growth but considering the giants in the background are probably 100 plus, I won’t be able to document much growth in my lifetime. Live strong, big guys!
new arms on Saguaro

blue moon

blue moon

“Once in a blue moon” is used to describe something that doesn’t happen often. but what exactly is a blue moon? It’s a full moon that occurs in the same month as another.

Although it occurs every two or three years (on average about every 2.7154 years), this is the first time in almost 20 years that we’ve had one on New Year’s Eve.

Want more? Here’s some interesting information about this phenomenon: