fremont_pincushion_death_valley_2It does look a bit like a coconut macaroon, and a particularly tasty one, but I must report that it is in fact an example of a Fremont pincushion (chaenactis fremontii), a white flower blooming in the deserts of the South West. I took this one in Death Valley yesterday. (It is Spring break, and I decided to get away for a bit.) Click for a larger view. There’s a tiny little creature of some sort perched on one of the petals. Surprisingly, given all the rain that took place in the Winter in Los Angeles, there was no big flower show here. The corresponding rain that happened in Death Valley was not so remarkable, and came at the wrong time (I’m told) and so the flower bloom was not a boom. Still, one can find some lovely wild flowers if one takes the time to look closely.


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5 Responses to Pincushion

  1. Mary Cole says:

    Thank you for sharing this lovely photo! I am glad you are having a break!

  2. David Brown says:

    This is an interesting close-up ā€” have you thought about putting it into the commons category for Wikipedia’s Chaenactis fremonti? Is the tiny creature a spider lurking in wait for insect pollinators? At the website “ there is a video under the name “Fremont Pincushion” ā€” other interesting videos are “Creosote Bush”, “Mojave Yucca” (or Yucca schidigera), and “Desert Sunflower”, all by Henry Shenkman. Apparently several species of wild desert honeybees are pollinators for C. fremonti. Are there photographs of C. fremonti in ultraviolet light?

  3. Ele Munjeli says:

    I’ve been talking about doing a camping trip down there with a friend but neither of us has ever been. Which campground do you recommend? Any advice on the visit?

  4. Clifford says:

    Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate… even when you think you don’t need it.

    Don’t camp where the humongous RVs might run you over.

    Do not go in July to shoot TV shows or for any other reason. Unless you have to. See here.

    See email for more.


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