Thursday, February 22, 2007
beautiful flowers

Here are some pictures of beautiful flowers. In the Cactus world, many of the flowers are considered unusual because people don't even expect them to flower at all, let alone be beautiful....But beautiful and different, they are. Above, and below, examples of the very very unusual..... This past blooming season, there were probably about 800 or more flowers on this plant....In this picture above you can see a cluster of these flowers in different stages of their life, from just beginning to full growth to drying up and dying....

Here below we see one single flower wide open...yes, that's as open as it gets...And of course the second flower is still making it's way to full growth. The color is this rich vivid crimson to deep shocking pimk. These are the flowers that I call, 'the penis flowers'...I probably shouldn't ever have nicknamed them this because then that's all anyone can think about when they see them...The plant itself, is a species of the Cleistocactus, but I am not completely sure which one. I think it is Cleistocactus strausii, but I am not absolutely sure. But whatever it's exact name is, I think this is a gorgeous example of Cacti self protection. And, it is to me, a very beautiful beautiful plant.... Yes, this is that fantastic plant that is near the Yucca Rostrata's. Look at the design of this plant....it is so perfect, includimg the fuzz that protects it from extreme heat. And if you look closely at the picture just before this one, you can see the long 'stickers', with the slightly tan and very sharp ends that come out from the shaft...more protection from preditors and such.... When I think of what this looked like when I first got it, it is almost unbelievable. It was in a little teeny tiny rectangular pot. There were two stalks which were each about three inches high. That was all. And al the branches that you see above, came from those two little stalks.


And that was almost 20 years ago. Now the picture over on the left was taken about 4 or 5 years later....and by then there were...what.....6 stalks or branches? So it was multiplying and growing up, all at the same time. As you can see, in that picture, even though it had grown quite a bit, it was still very small. By the time of this picture, the tallest arm was about a foot high....And when you look at the picture above you can see how much this plant has grown over the years....When I stand next to it, many of the arms are a lot taller than me, and I am 5'4" and shrinking!

Here is a close-up of some of those branches, again, filled with flowers in different stages of their life-cycle.... And in the background, of course, those wonderful Yucca Rostrata's....Incidentally, there are many many Yucca species....Rostrata is just one of maybe 100 or more....There are wild Yucca's growing all over these hills here in Los Angeles by the way, and they flower with big clusters of beautiful off-white blossoms....My Yucca's have not ever bloomed, as yet. But you can be sure you will read about it here, when they do bloom! (lol)

Below, is another picture of these amazing red flowers on this lovely fuzzy Cleistocactus plant.... And you can see that the whole top section is a slightly different color than just underneath it....that whole top part is all the new growth for the year....And in fact, that is often how one can tell the age of certain plants----by counting the sections of growth starting at the bottom.....Gee, I so love the look of this plant.....it is so sculptural, as are most cactus and succulant plants. I think that is what always attracted me to them....they are natures 'works of art'. And above, another shot of these luminescent flowers....the detail of the design is fascinating to me....and then that one little stamin coming out as if reaching for the light and the sun. The Hummingbirds love these flowers and it is glorious to watch them stick their beaks right into the flower and drink the sweet sweet necter....The magic of nature, once again.....





More To Come.....









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31 Comments:
had this to say:

They look so human like! Those pink blossoms are like fingers! Extraordinary! (great pics too)

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 6:06:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Deana has a much more g-rated way to describe those blossoms, but I'm with you Naomi, they look like male appendages to me...lol!

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 9:40:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Great photos, Naomi! Your macro pictures are amazing and breathtaking! You did a good job!

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 11:42:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Beautiful!
Thank you for sharing your garden.
It is a pleasure to see and read about your artful, colorful and beautiful world.
All I see outside is a white blanket. I am ready for spring.
Have a wonderful day!
*^_^
(=':'=) hugs
(")_ (")Š from
the Cool Raggedy one

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 12:40:00 PM PST 

Blogger srp
had this to say:

These are gorgeous and they look so soft, although I know in my head that this is not a plant to "hug". Your macros are beautiful. I am going to have to get a macro lens for my new camera to get the best shot... maybe on my wish list for later.

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 2:09:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

ROFL! Well now... that's TWO plants I've heard called "penis" plants -- one is yours and the other is an Hawai'ian flower -- and if I'm not mistaken the OFFICIAL name for it means "little boy flower"... That's funny! I can SEE why you would nickname it though! They sure ARE beautiful! I have learned more about cacti from having discovered your blog than I could have EVER hoped to learn on my own! Without you sharing the JOY of them, I would just never have been that interested!

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 2:21:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

The macro shots are great. Those pink flowers look alien to me. I think I like the rostrata's the best; they look as though they have their pretty feathered hats on!

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 2:38:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I want to come see these beauties in person:-). I just love when you share these wonderful species. Have a good evening!!.

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 3:28:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I love these as you know Naomi! Just amazing flowers. The pink ones remind me of fingers with one little flower sticking out of each one!! These have really grown well for you over the years. So nice that you have been there that long and have gotten to see them go through all this growth, a treat you would have missed if you had moved! Love your garden!!!!

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 3:57:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I think cactus bring forth THEE most unusual flowers I've ever seen. I'm just captivated by them. Gorgeous photos!

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 4:31:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I've told you in the past that Gord loves cacti. He's going to freak when he sees these pix!

Want some snow? We got more today :(

Thursday, February 22, 2007 at 7:25:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Cacti are amazing plants - so speacialised and also so beautiful. They really are sculptured to look at and their flowers are always colouful and bright.

It's amazing how much yours has grown. In the UK we have to keep them indoors adn they don't grow nearly as much! I love the close up photos of the flowers and I am desperately trying not to think of what you call them when I look at them! LOL!

BTW - you did get what my post was about :-) Basically I suppose I could have said, knowing the result of something allows you to change what you don't like and accept what you can't change :-)

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 1:25:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Lovely photos as always, have a great weekend.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 1:38:00 AM PST 

Anonymous Pat
had this to say:

Hi my dear! You certainly have got the right plants for the right place - which is half the battle and they do you proud. I know nothing of cactii and wonder if you have to water then at all?
Michele sent me.
PS I'm glad male appendages aren't quite like that.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 2:39:00 AM PST 

Anonymous mar
had this to say:

This past blooming season, there were probably about 800 or more flowers on this plant That's amazing!!!! it's a beautiful cactus and the blossoms are incredible! the nickname you gave to the flowers probably attracts many lurkers to your site, lol!

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 8:07:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Some of those pictures look like some kind of alien has taken up residence in your (amazing) garden.... Envious as always....

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 9:16:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

I had NO idea these had any blooms or flowers. Makes me want to head over to Huntington to see if they're blooming. Amazing.
~S

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 11:05:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Those red blossoms are so phallic! But they are so beautiful. You are such an inspiration to use gardeners. I just love to look at it.

Michele says hi.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 11:15:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

OK, I'm a little scared of those red things. ;)

Gorgeous photos as always, my dear!

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 12:33:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

How beautiful, I love cactuses, of course I live on the wrong side of the U.S. to have any really, but they are really fascinating, I especially like how you've got them all over like that, the shapes look like art.
Here from Micheles.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 12:33:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Bwaahaahaa! I've always thought of most cacti flowers as being somewhat phallic. Beautiful, but phallic. That you wrote that about your "penis flowers" cracks me up. :P

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 3:42:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

They are lovely....such brilliant colors!

Kendra

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 4:10:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Very nice shots. The first one almost looks like a tarantula... or at least its legs. It a beautiful day today,

Michele sent me - this time,

Mike

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 4:30:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Once again, I see beautiful flowers. I imagine myself being surrounded with all of these. It must be pleasant to wake up in the morning and see all of them blooming.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 5:39:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

That's such a unique plant. It didn't matter if you mentioned penis or not, I was already thinking it.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 5:42:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

They are beautiful - How clever of you to see the beauty in quite stark plants...

lovely...simply lovely,

minerva

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 6:20:00 PM PST 

Anonymous Lyn M..
had this to say:

WELL, I'VE CAUGHT UP ON ALL THE DAYS I MISSED WHILE I WAS UNDER THE COVERS AND JUST LOVED ALL THE WONDER OF NATURE'S GLORIOUS AND COLORFUL DESIGNS. YOUR GARDEN IS TRULY LOVELY AND MAKES ME WISH I STILL HAD ONE TO TEND. I ONCE HAD A LARGE CIRCULAR GARDEN CENTERED BY A LITTLE JAPANESE TREE THAT BLOOMED IN RICH ORANGE COLOR EVERY SPRING AND ALL AROUND IT FLOWERING PLANTS OF EVERY SIZE AND COLOR. BUT I SHALL NOT BE CONTRARY... NOW I'LL BE CONTENT WATCHING YOUR GARDEN GROW.

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 8:31:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

beautiful flowers. longtime lurker and I just want to tell you I really enjoy your writing and personality! have a great day!

Friday, February 23, 2007 at 11:38:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I like the close ups of the "private parts" more than the wider framed shots, Naomi. The pink things are pretty--and slightly penis like, I guess. They are genitals, after all, so I guess some similarity to the human style isn't surprising.

Looking at plant private parts...we're so bad!

Michele sent me over to look at your...I can't say it. LOL

Saturday, February 24, 2007 at 12:37:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

What can I say? I get a big kick out of seeing your wild things. They make me laugh out loud with surprise!!

Saturday, February 24, 2007 at 7:57:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

I happened to hit this post randomly as I wanted to go back in your archives. I love this cactus you have posted photos of. About a month ago I was walking in Claremont, Ca by the colleges and came across this same plant and took photos. I never knew what it was called, so thank you!!

I love cactus - I just visited the Living Desert in Palm Desert a few weeks back - gorgeous place.

Hope your day is great - we are starting to get just a few heavy gusts of wind but not much so far.

Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 9:20:00 AM PST 

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