Part V in our project, “It is Beautiful Where We Live”.

Barrel Cactus Blooms

I find I have taken our membership to the Phoenix Botanical Garden for granted. I really enjoy being able to visit early in the morning  to check out the extensive variety of plants and blooms as well as the local bird life. I find solace in the early morning hours in the coolness of the desert when the birds and other wildlife are most active and the blossoms of the night blooming cacti are at their fullest. As a photographer, it has also been a good place to try out new gear or a explore a new technique.

When COVID-19 hit, the garden closed. This cut-off from my local escape was difficult for me. It re-emphasized the craziness of the world and the isolation of the shelter at home order.

Three months later, the garden has started to reopen, only for members, with very limited hours, and a time slot reservation. I signed up immediately.

I had no expectations.  I actually had an image in my head of a line of people like ants, marching through the garden 6 feet apart on a set path in one direction.  Thank goodness this was not the case.

A touchless entry with a preprinted pass brought me into my beloved garden.  I headed straight for the “Wildflower Garden” to see what was in bloom and to hopefully capture a few hummingbird shots. 

Hummingbird Beak Deep in Pollen

Checking out the Competition

I can never get enough of these beautiful little creatures.

Posing for the Camera

I could have stood here all morning until my arms could no longer hold my camera, but I was pulled by the desire to explore a bit more. It is always a challenge to walk away from a good scene. I always wonder, did I capture the best shot or should have stayed a bit longer for a better one?

Cactus Wren Building the Nest

Forced to make a decision

These saguaro fruits are so tasty!

What a beautiful day

Hopefully, the garden will stay open and I can return again soon, perhaps, for a better shot of a hummingbird and a few more flowers.

Remember it’s all about the light.