Dick Hunt's Blog

October 26, 2010

The Beauties of Nature

Filed under: Current — Dick Hunt's Blog @ 6:24 pm

The Beauties Of Nature
by Dick Hunt, October 26th, 2010.

This afternoon while I was visiting with my wife in her Care Home, Holyrood Manor, we watched for a time a program centered around the Beauties of Nature.  In particular, what was featured was the Desert Cacti which grows  in profusion in all the desert areas of the world.  I well remember the beautiful colours of the blossoms on cutbanks  and the sides of gullies on  the Ranch where I spent most of the first 35 years of my life in eastern Alberta.  The blossoms appear in  the nest of sharp needles which surround them and one picks them at the peril of bleeding fingers.  I recall that there were two species on the Ranch, small and medium size but brilliantly beautiful and with a wide range of  deep colours.

In our later years after retirement, Ruth and I traveled numerous times in  the winter months to the United States, notably Arizona, California, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico.  Never having been that far south before, we were amazed at the sheer variety, size and beauty of the Desert Cacti. We were prepared to put up with the boredom of sand and dunes and rocks and  tortured twisted trees.  But we were instead delighted by the sheer variety of the flora and fauna of the areas in which we spent a few months each year in our neighboring country.

There were so many different species that I cannot recall in  this brief article, Botanical names.  But what I do recall with great pleasure is the colour and variety.  Some of the plants were huge and when they were ready to bloom they seemed overnight to become transformed with brilliance.  Without going to my travel diaries, I describe to you one which  in dry periods without rain looked like a dead nest of tall thin sticks fanning out from the sand and covered with sharp, long needles. The bark looked lifeless and when we first saw them, I wondered why they were given space on which to grow.  But a day or two after a sudden shower, the “sticks” were covered with tiny, shiny, green leaves which literally shrouded the stems.  Shortly afterward, at the tips of the stems deep red blossoms appeared in  great profusion, so lovely and a feast for the eyes. What was common to all the blossoms on all the Cacti was the sheer, variety,  depth and translucent colours of all that we saw. And accompanying the beauties of the Cacti  were the ground flowers which also seemed to appear overnight after  showers in literal blankets of gorgeous colours to augment the Cacti.  Our ideas of the desert and it’s  God given gifts magnified awesomely.

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