Earlier in the week we had a storm — technically outside the officially designated monsoon season — and it was a colorful one. Our microcosm of Phoenix received about a half inch of technicolor rain in a very short time, without the wind and hail that the same towering clouds dropped on neighbors less than three miles to the east. The storm brought amazing sunset skies, migrants, optimistic amphibians, and flowers to our yard. (All photos E.Shock.)
The next morning, we found an excellent red dragonfly drying its wings on barbed wire, “our” spadefoot wound up in the pool again along with the rest of the storm debris, awaiting rescue, and the Herrerrae barrel cactus’s crown of fragrant yellow and red blooms were saturated with color. The architecturally precise buds tautly await their turn in the vortex of the flower crown — the easier-going little lemony pine-apples slouching around the edge are last year’s fruits, waiting to split open and disgorge their seeds, or be plucked and carried off by an herbivore, and left elsewhere to start a new barrel.
With luck, cactus and wildflower seeds all over the desert will be soaking up the fall moisture, preparing themselves for next spring’s blooming.