Thursday, May 5, 2011

May Musings: Wildflowers and Mother's Day

Hedgehog Cacti - Monte Largo Mountains, New Mexico

It's May.  Almost Mother's Day.  The Hedgehog Cactus is blooming. Hiking the trails in the Monte Largo Mountains behind Sandia Knolls where I live, you can find these Claret Cup or Hedgehog Cactus blooming profusely this month.  The elevation here is about 7000 ft. Most wildflowers are sparse due to a very dry Spring but the conditions are fine for these xeric plants. They do best on sunny southern-facing exposures of rocky soil and protected from strong winds beneath pinon pine (Pinus edulis) and juniper (Juniperus monosperma) trees.

Other wildflowers along these trails include the following:

Lambert's Locoweed

Perky Sue

Sierra Blanca Bladderpod

Baby Asters, also known as White Asters

This is probably a Crescent Milkvetch
Cutflower Puccoon
Foothills Paintbrush
"April showers bring May flowers" is a saying that doesn't quite apply this May.  Wildflowers are sparse due to our Spring drought.  We got a bit of snow and rain earlier this week.  So I am hoping that this helps. 

You can join an experienced Wildflower Guide  for a wildflower walk each Saturday morning June through Labor Day Weekend. Contact the Sandia Ranger Station to confirm the hike location (Tel. 505-281-3304) or for more information for all Saturday morning wildflower walks throughout the Summer. I will lead the wildflower hikes in the Sandia Mountains the first two Saturdays of June.  If you'd like to join me, we will meet at the Sandia District Ranger Station in Tijeras 11776 Hwy 337, Tijeras, NM , at 9:00AM on Saturday, June 4 (possible hike location may be Ojito Open Space or Cienaga Canyon Trail) and June 11 (possible hike locations may include Tree Spring Trail,  Cienaga Canyon Trail or Tecolote Trail).  We will then drive (car pool encouraged) to the trailhead.  Bring water, wear a hat/sunscreen and comfortable shoes for hiking, and bring your camera. Location of the hike may change, so please meet by 9AM at the Ranger Station in Tijeras. There is a parking fee of $3 in the National Forest (no fee for Ojito Open Space), or you may use your interagency annual pass, your America the Beautiful annual pass, or your Golden Age Passport.

Brunch on Mother's Day 2010 at Greenside Cafe

May 8th is Mother's Day.  I will get to spend it with my two daughters, Amanda and Mary, Matt and my husband Ron.  We will barbecue and maybe take a wildflower walk. 

Matt and Ron at Mother's Day Brunch 2010

I received a lovely orchid ...

...and a yellow rose.

And to all the Mothers in the world, may you be treated with respect and love, each day of the year.

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