Category: Spring

Claret Cup Cactus Blossoms

Claret Cup Cactus Blossoms

Each year is the same and each year is also different. Although these are the only claret cup blossoms I’ve seen this year, I saw lots of buds yesterday. And every single claret cup cactus I saw — including this one — was growing out of rock. Although I saw many claret cup cactuses last spring as well, I don’t believe any were growing out of rock.

Calf Canyon / Hermit’s Peak Wildfire

Calf Canyon/Hermit's Peak Smoke Plume, April 21, 2022

New Mexico’s wildfire season is off to an early and roaring start. I was driving through the Rio Grande Gorge on Thursday when I saw this huge smoke plume, which I figured was from either the Calf Canyon or Hermit’s Peak wildfire (Sangre de Cristos).

We had some of the wildest, craziest winds I can remember the following day. They served to start something like 20 wildfires in the state; yesterday the Calf Canyon and Hermit’s Peak fires merged into a single, very large, mostly uncontained wildfire. There’s no rain forecast for the foreseeable future. 🙁

Wild Pasqueflowers, 2022 Edition

Wild Pasqueflowers

I just love these little flowers, which grow wild in two very specific places I know of, both on the east side of the Sandias between about 6,000 and 8,000 feet. They almost always bloom right around Passover and Easter and this year, despite a very late spring, was no exception — I saw the first blossoms just a few days ago.

Happy Easter/Passover/Spring and/or whatever else you celebrate.

Sandia Hairstreak, 2022 Edition

Sandia Hairstreak, 2022 Edition

Despite a rather dry winter and a fairly chilly spring, New Mexico’s state butterfly — the Sandia hairstreak (Callophrys mcfarlandi) — has been quite visible in the Sandia foothills during recent weeks. This one is browsing on some three-leaf sumac flower buds which are just starting to open.

On the Cusp of Spring

Bosque Pond on the Cusp of Spring

Budding cottonwoods line a bosque pond beneath a glowering sky that makes spring feel like it’s still winter.

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