Japanesque Desert

The dried flowers of a yucca silhouetted against the Tucson sky was the base for this Japanese-inspired art piece. Simplicity of form and the interplay of negative and positive space make this a satisfying image for me. Image copyrighted. Any use requires licensing from Martha Lochert http://www.MarthaLochertPhotography.com

November Sunflowers

My country is defined by diversity – not just in the people, cultural heritages, etc., but in the topography and vastly different climate zones as well. It’s almost December and the sunflowers are just finishing their season in Arizona. While Chicago is looking at 32 degrees for a high tomorrow, ours was 84 degrees yesterday. I’m glad I […]

Happy Feather Tree

My Feather Tree (Chilean Mesquite Tree) is in bloom. I’m happy. I have pampered three of these extremely slow-growing thorn-less mesquite hybrids from seed for about six years now and this one is only about two feet tall. They are a deciduous plant, so every winter they drop their leaves. Hearty to ten to fifteen degrees fahrenheit, they are usually […]

Bach’s Cactus Nursery

The other day I was with a friend at Bach’s Cactus Nursery and saw this gorgeous cactus flower in bloom. Though they have been in business forty-two years (since 1970), I had never visited the expansive five acres of nursery space and twenty-four greenhouses which sit on the ten-acre grounds of Dan and Diane Bach’s business. If you are in […]

Signs of Spring

Today I was gifted an adorable miniature cactus with these beautiful orange flowers. Though my macro lens makes them appear fairly monumental, they are diminutive blossoms smaller across than the size of a dime. They made this cold and rainy day a bit brighter. Thank you, my friend.   Image copyright Martha Lochert http://www.MarthaLochertPhotography.com

Sunset Beauty Moment

White Prickly Poppy (Argemone mexicana) or “Cowboy’s Egg” at sunset in Gardner Canyon in the Santa Rita Mountains of southern Arizona. 1/125 second at f 7.1 – ISO 3200 with diffused fill-flash All parts of this year-round bloomer, known by the Aztecs as “nourishment for the dead”  have psychoactive properties. Shamans used it for journeys to […]

Cone Flowers in the Morning

These Yerba Mansa (Anemopsis californica) are a wildflower in the Lizard-Tail family which bloom from May through August in moist alkaline soils of  northern Mexico and the southwestern United States. According to Spellenberg’s Sonoran Desert Wildflowers,  the indigenous people use the flower for medicinal purposes: as a tea for stomach ailments, as a salve for skin problems, in a poultice for […]

Woolly Daisy

The yellow woolly daisy (Eriophyllum wallecei) is a diminutive plant in the sunflower family with half-inch wide heads that bloom from March through June in the desert washes and open sandy soil of the southwest United States and northern Mexico. I photographed these after sunset with a macro lens, a dragged shutter (to show ambient light in the sky), […]

Silverpuffs

Silverpuffs (Urapappus lindleyi) are in the sunflower family and grow in open areas below 6,000 feet in much of the western United States. They bloom from March – June. I found these growing in my front yard and photographed them with a 60mm macro lens at ISO 100 for 1/800 second at f/4, which gave a nice […]

Saguaro Cactus in Bloom

It’s May; time for the fleeting once-a-year blossoms on the Saguaro cactus. If you want to photograph them, get up early in the morning, as they are night-bloomers and their blossoms soon wilt in the sun. These were photographed at about 10 AM and already show signs of burning up from the sunlight. Image copyrighted. Reproduction and […]

Pink Cereus Flower

Generally I’m not a fan of the color pink, but this beauty caught my eye when it bloomed in the front yard of one of my neighbors. As it turned out, this was just the first of several dozen blooms which erupted in wash of fuscia over her collection of cactus. These are night-blooming Cereus, which are […]

Desert Chicory

Desert Chicory (Rafinesquia neomexicana) is a member of the sunflower family. It is a wildflower in the open desert of the southwest United States in elevations from 500 – 4500 feet.  I found these on the Douglas Spring Trail in the Rincon Mountains east of Tucson, Arizona.  They have a long flowering season of February through July. If […]

Bee & Thistle

On a hike with my son on the very solitary Loma Alta Trail in the southern part of the Rincon Mountains we encountered a patch of New Mexico Thistle growing in the wild grasses and partial shade of a sandy wash bed.  The constant hum of the bees filled our ears as we made our way […]

Fiddlenecks

Rancher’s Fireweed / Devil’s Lettuce (Amsinckia menziesii) of the Borage family glistens in the back-lit sun on Cactus Forest Trail in Tucson, Arizona. It’s flowering season is March through May in mostly weedy or grassy places below 5,000 feet in the western United States and northwestern Mexico. The fiddleneck flower cluster uncoils, leaving the new blossoms accessible to the […]

Douglas Spring Trail

The desert southwest is sometimes touted as a dry, sparse and harsh environment, but no one could argue that point at this time of year; the terrain is erupting in color. Earlier in the week we hiked the Douglas Spring Trail which starts at the far east end of Speedway in Tucson, Arizona. We embarked […]

Cactus Forest Trail

Thanks to a very wet winter, wildflowers are giving Tucson a great show right now. Yellow and orange African Daisies and Poppies fill yards where the homeowners have planted wildflower seeds, and in the outlying desert areas to the north and west yellow Brittlebush is abundant, but at the base of the Rincon Mountains on the east side of town, the dominant […]

Tombstone Roses

I saw this gorgeous Tombstone Rose at the Tucson Botanical Gardens yesterday when I was there to photograph a high school senior for her graduation announcements. It’s a great time to visit the museum since the temperature is perfect and the spring blooms are in full force. The “Butterfly Magic” exhibit is still going on too. See http://www.tucsonbotanical.org […]

Honey Bees of Spring

It’s officially Spring and the honey bees are already busy pollinating the flowers and collecting their treasure to take back to the hive. This little guy has been busy visiting the blue lupines, as you can see by the orange pollen sacks on the tibia of his back legs. By the time he finishes with his work those […]