..........a blog about food, travel, gardening, and living the good life in Arizona.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

D is for desert

My home... specifically, the Sonoran Desert which covers over 100,000 square miles stretching from Arizona to Mexico and west to Baja California. Different areas of this desert can look desolate while others are lush with vegetation and mountains. I am most familiar with the Sonoran Desert here in Tucson with its towering saguaros, scrubby cholla and colorful prickly pear. The Catalina Mountain backdrop to the north of the city changes with the seasons; dry and rocky in the summer, then green and lush in the early fall to snow speckled in the winter. The desert really does have seasons. This is the view from my kitchen window... I never tire of it.

At all times of the year, the desert is full of life. Right now in early January, I have cultivated annuals, roses, and a flourishing vegetable garden. In February, the wildflowers will begin to bloom and from then on the many varieties of cacti and flowering shrubs will take their turns blooming throughout the warmer months of the year.

The desert is alive with wild animals too. In our little corner of the desert, we have coyote, raccoon, javelina, bobcats, and many varieties of birds, lizards and snakes. Our trail cam records some of them passing through our property at night -- rarely are the larger animals seen during daylight hours so we are delighted to be able to see their presence digitally.

There are many aspects of desert life to explore and appreciate. One I especially savor happens right after it rains when the creosote bush releases its unmistakable scent -- the smell of rain. A wonder to experience, it always reminds me of how blessed I am to live amidst the natural beauty of this desert I call home.

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