Desert In Bloom – Night Blooming Cereus

This particular cactus deserves a post of it’s own.  It is breathtakingly beautiful and once open, the blooms last only one night.


It is a night blooming cereus that starts to open as the sun sets and starts to wilt as soon as the sun touches it the next day, and by evening, the bloom is shriveled, wilted, and dead.

Here is a photo of the bloom, 4 days before it opened.


And another photo taken this morning of the entire plant.


You can see the start of a brand new bud (looks really fuzzy) on the arm that is to the left of the one with the bloom.  And yes, I took the time to clean up the dead branches in the foreground.  I had placed them on the path in front of the cactus to protect the bud from the javelina that frequent the yard and like to feast on new cactus growth.  If they were determined, the branches wouldn’t have stopped them.

Here’s another closeup taken this morning at sunrise.  The flower was over 8 inches in diameter.


On April 3, 2012 – I captured a photo of two flowers in bloom at the same time.  I called them Sisters.

If you would like one of these beauties in your year, the common name is Argentine Giant and you can find it at local nurseries labeled either as Trichocereus Candicans or Echinopsis Candicans.

check out these other related posts:  Desert In Bloom and Desert In Bloom Part 2.

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2 Replies to “Desert In Bloom – Night Blooming Cereus”

  1. Hi! I love the images… so much so I want to paint some studies of them if you would let me. I promise to credit your work and point those interested to your blog. I love the javelina story and your determination to preserve natures beauty. I’ve been painting cactus flowers for a few months now and just learned about night blooming cereus. They are my new passion. What an amazing natural occurrence and an inspirational metaphor for life.

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