Quail Lane Studios
Can you hug a cactus? Many of them seem cute, almost huggable. And some even have cute names, like "teddy bear cholla", or "queen of the night". Their blossoms are often magnificent, with a riot of colors and shapes varying from the incredibly ornate to the simply improbable. We feature some of them here, together with agaves, aloes, yuccas and other pointed plants. We recommend that you hug just the art. Both you and the prickly things will be happier. Digitography is made for flowers and plants. Take a look. Be sure and check our other galleries as well; they overlap a little.
For your convenience, we've placed only a few images on each page of this gallery. When you are ready, go back to pages 1 or 2 in this Gallery, or use the tags at the top to view other galleries on our site and place your order.
Queen of Hearts
Queen of Hearts©. Any prickly pear can produce a yellow flower. Only a few prickly pears can produce red blossoms. And every so often a prickly pear is seen to produce a double lobe in the shape of a heart. But it is rare indeed for the Queen of Hearts to appear, shooting two brilliant red blooms from its twin lobes. Sadly, next year her reign will be over as a stalk grows from each lobe.
Queen of the Forest
Queen of the Forest. What’s going on here? This little cactus, hiding under a little shade in Arizona’s Superstition Mountains, produces some of the largest cactus flowers known. These flowers are nearly 10 inches across. They are waiting patiently for their share of humming birds and sphinx moths who will visit soon to do their part in spreading these cacti.
Saguaro Puffs© are a cluster of the enormous flowers that top out our giant cacti. Just once a year, they await a bird-sized moth to visit in the evening fertilizing these beauties. With a little good fortune, they will turn to delicious ripe cherry-red fruit.
Showing Off©. An early season bloomer, this prickly pear grows against a background of lichen-covered volcanic rock. Each bloom lasts barely a day, long enough for the bees and passing humming birds to enjoy its sweet nectar and to allow us to marvel at its strange rough delicacy.
Simply Elegant©. What is it about the trichocereus? It doesn’t want to flower at all during the fall or the winter, no matter what the weather. Just another cactus. But then, sometime around April, they all effortlessly burst out with enormous multiple blooms. The gorgeous blooms pictured here are each nearly six inches wide.
Surrounded©. At least it feels as though we are surrounded. Between the barrel cacti and the Organ Pipes the yellow brittle brush seem to provide a soft flowery mat. Don’t relax too much—a fat rattlesnake just passed through on its hunt for mice and lizards.
Where Is It?
Where is it?©. We generally see Harris hawks either atop saguaros or swooping over their prey. This is a little different. Apparently this sharp-eyed predator has spotted some juicy morsel climbing around the heads of the barrel cactus. Unusual by itself, the barrel is over five feet high and landing there may seem similar to landing on a saguaro.
Wild Lace©. A bed of wild penstamen quietly grows and flowers, flashing red to the sun. Then, one year a magnificent intruder begins to push upward through the lacy flowers. Here, a small columnar cactus, only a few feet tall, stands proudly dominating its garden surroundings.
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One last comment: We know these images are tempting; they are also copyrighted. Downloading for printing or other copying is expressly forbidden.