Ocotillo blossoms in our backyard.
April is my favorite time of the year. Dried up prickly ocotillo cacti turn into lush, green (prickly) spires with their bright orange pops of color reaching for the sky, declaring the end of winter.
The desert begins to blossom. Shades of brown and muted greens suddenly fill with orange, purple, yellow and red. Tiny hedgehog cacti peek out from beneath rocks, their red blooms drawing in your eye. 58 varieties of wildflowers are blooming in the desert this month. People who say the desert is dull, boring or even ugly have never really Seen the desert. Not like this.
Poppies in Lost Dutchman State Park
Closer to home, our backyard is slowly coming to life. The ocotillos, pomegranate tree and oleander all begin blossoming at the same time. The amount of time we spend outside drinking coffee and relaxing in the porch swing increases with the blossoms.
The prickly pear, or nopales, push out tiny new pads and green fruit that will ripen into a deep magenta and become jam in the fall.
Nopales in the spring.
Besides the sudden infusion of color into our world, spring brings sunny, warm days and cool, crisp mornings and evenings. And still one blissful month until the temperatures reach "scorching" on the thermometer. These spring days are what make summers in the desert worthwhile.