Friday, April 21, 2017

Pretty in (Multiple Shades of) Pink

Echinocereus armatus
I have been calling this cactus Echinocereus armatus for sometime now based on the long thin straight central spines, but the dark red in the center of the flowers indicates parentage perhaps from a different species.






Friday, April 14, 2017

Echinocereus fasciculatus - Strawberry Fruit

Echinocereus fasciculatus
Echinocereus fasciculatus - Strawberry Fruit


Echinocereus fasciculatus
My son was keen to give the edible fruit a try.  He had previously tried (several) Dragon Fruit smoothies on a recent trip to South East Asia.


Echinocereus fasciculatus
Looks and tastes like the larger Dragon Fruits that are becoming more popular in grocery stores.  A mildly sweet white meat with a seedy crunch like a strawberry.


Purslane
Another edible in the cactus garden, Portulaca oleracea, Purslane, eaten as part of salads in the Middle East, Greece, and India.  Has a mild tart flavor that was apparently loved by Gandhi and it even appears as a food in some translations of the Bible.

Ice Plant blooming happily in Spring, the heat of a Texas summer will prove too much for this plant.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Friday, March 3, 2017

Baby Doves


Sadly the next day I went to check on these baby doves and in their place was a large snake with two lumps in his belly.   These birds were about 16 feet off the ground so I was amazed that a snake was able to reach them there.

Echinocereus pentalophus


Echinocereus pentalophus



Friday, February 24, 2017

Caespitosus = spines growing in clusters or tufts

Texas Lace Cactus
Echinocereus reichenbachii subsp. caespitosus - Texas Lace Cactus can come in many spine colors and have quite a lot of variation in flower colors and sizes.  I would say the cactus above is subspecies 'caespitosus' from Central Texas given the extra large flower and the relatively increased projection of spines in contrast to the more typical reichenbachii (below) where the spines are tightly held and can easily be touched without the fear of retribution.




Orange Flame Flower
Orange Flame Flower (Talinum auranticum)





Texas vervain
Texas vervain - Verbena halei


Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Two-tailed Swallowtail

Two-tailed Swallowtail
Papilio multicaudata - Two-tailed Swallowtail - Many of the older maps have this species occurring in a range starting about 150 miles West of Austin.  However, newer maps have shifted this direction either by correction or expansion of its native range.  I find them frequently in Austin in close proximity to Escarpment black cherry trees.


Papilio multicaudata
Papilio multicaudata - Two-tailed Swallowtail


Echinocereus armatus
Echinocereus reichenbachii ssp. armatus

Echinocereus dasyacanthus
Echinocereus dasyacanthus


Thelocactus bicolor
Thelocactus bicolor

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Echinocereus poselgeri aka Wilcoxia poselgeri

echinocereus dasyacanthus
Echinocereus dasyacanthus

echinocereus dasyacanthus
Echinocereus dasyacanthus



Wilcoxia poselgeri
Echinocereus poselgeri


echinocereus poselgeri
echinocereus poselgeri


echinocereus poselgeri
echinocereus poselgeri