Wildflowers of the Mojave Desert: Fouquieria Splendens


Highlights of the West > Mojave Desert Wildflowers

Fouquieria Splendens
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Ocotillo (fouquieria splendens) is a common sight across three of the four US deserts (Mojave, Sonoran, Chihuahuan), where it appears lifeless for much of the year, the tall, narrow stems covered only by large spines; this species is often mistaken for a cactus. But in spring both bright green leaves and terminal clusters of red-orange flowers appear. Individual flowers are narrow and tubular, so pollination is by humming birds and other long-beaked species.

Species in the fouquieriaceae family





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