The Greenery of Arizona

You might not think of the word ‘green’ when you think of Arizona – but the State is more than just desert with a few cactus!

Phoenix Desert Botanical Gardens

The Phoenix Desert Botanical Gardens is a showcase of arid-land plants from deserts around the world. This Dale Chihuly Glass Sculpture– Desert Towers welcomes visitors. It was installed as the entry-point to Chihuly’s first Desert Botanical exhibition in 2008. The installation was purchased by the Garden as a legacy to the exhibition.

Greater Phoenix ArizonaEast of Phoenix are the Superstition Mountains. In the spring, they sport a coat of green, sprinkled with bursts of color when the desert plants bloom. The mountains rise steeply to an elevation of 5,024 feet, and are characterized by sheer-sided, jagged, volcanic peaks and ridges.
Tonto National ForestNorth and east of Phoenix is the Water Users Recreation Site on the Salt River in Tonto National Forest. The Tonto National Forest, encompassing 2,873,200 acres, is the largest of the six national forests in Arizona and is the fifth largest national forest in the United States.
green water St. Patrick's DayNorth of Phoenix is the community of Fountain Hills. At noon on St. Patrick’s Day, the water of the Fountain Hills Fountain is tinted green, and when it is turned on, it shoots to the maximum height of 560 feet. Normally the height of the fountain  is limited to 330 feet. It runs for 15 minutes at the top of each hour from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day of the week!
green water St. Patrick's Day

Winter in ‘Zona is springtime
Spring is summer askew
Summer is torturous hellfire
Autumn is summer part II
– Terri Guillemets, “Spring sun,” 1993 –

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is It IS Easy Being Green!

Golf Carts and Corn Stalks – After Flood Perspectives

Our eyes are side by side – we just naturally look at life in a horizontal perspective!

In the aftermath of the Flood at Hidden Valley, Alberta, a few things that were once vertically aligned are now in a horizontal position. This golf cart near the 4th green has become a little greenhouse for what looks like a sunflower plant!

I turned the camera and took a vertical shot of the 4th fairway. It is now a lush forest of new poplar saplings and – a few more sunflower plants.

I continued walking along the 4th, past the Half Way house, then to the 6th green and bunkers. In addition to much more beach area, I found a corn plant.

This vertical photo shows the lush green growth of the grass – and a few more of the many corn plants in that area!

The Car Guy and I think that bird feed must have been scattered by the flood waters. The wet, nutrient rich silt encouraged the seeds to germinate and grow very quickly.  If these plants manage to set seed, then Hidden Valley could become a non-typical source of food for the birds for many years to come.

There are many other plants blooming in the Valley right now – I’ll post some photos in a few days.

All of our homes may have been destroyed, but the plant life is thriving. In a few years, it will be hard to tell that our Community was ever there.

Link to this week’s Photo Challenge: One Shot Two Ways

Foreshadow of a Flood – Rain Clouds

Sometimes clouds, not fluffy ones like these, but dark, rain filled ones – settle in over the Rocky Mountains and dump buckets of water. If they do this when these mountains are still covered with their winter coats of snow, then disaster will follow.

448-hidden-valley-at-lake

Frozen little mountain streams turn into torrents which then fill the rivers they feed. As the rivers flow east, they merge – creating even more powerful forces. By the time the Bow River got to where this picture was taken at the Community of Hidden Valley, it was flowing faster and higher than it ever had in our lifetimes. This photo foreshadows  what was to come.

Edward VIII replaced his fly buttons with a zip, a revolutionary move; and his Fair Isle pullovers, shorts and Windsor knots were considered by some to foreshadow the end of Empire.
– Angus McGill –

To see other photos from this Challenge: Weekly Photo Challenge: Foreshadow