These small cactus were everywhere at Saguaro National Park. They might be small, but take notice of the multitudinous spines! Don’t mess with small. They have large, beautiful flowers and the bees, as you can see, loved them. The cactus, mammillaria grahamii or mammillaria microcarpa, has a rather unfortunate common name: Graham’s nipple cactus. I have no idea where that came from as the resemblance isn’t evident to me!! Even Madonna at her worst wasn’t as sharp as this.

Let’s go with its other common name: Arizona fishhook cactus. This is a rather specialized cactus found in a small area of west California, southwest and south Arizona, southwest New Mexico and a few small areas of far west Texas

  1. macmsue says:

    They are certainly beautiful flowers.

  2. peggyjoan42 says:

    Beautiful cactus. You have to watch out for cactus in Arizona – they will reach out and get you.

    • The problem in this area is that they’re everywhere, so you really have to look carefully when you step anywhere that isn’t the path.

    • Gradmama2011 says:

      the “jumping cholla” are noted for hopping onto clothing or shoes. One of them got my little 2-yr grandson once, he was very impressed. πŸ™‚

      • And even the tiniest spine can hurt. Of course the cholla don’t actually jump but they do detach from the original cactus and reattach easily, so I can see why they got that name. πŸ™‚

      • Gradmama2011 says:

        They were like the “burr” weed here that sticks to clothing and is not painful but highly annoying. I have a lot of it, which sucks ya in with pretty leaves, nice yellow flowers, and tend to turn into stick-ums when the least expected. The plant is very invasive, and at a mid stage it can be pulled out by the handful. Determined devil.

      • Seems as if all “bad” plants are determined. πŸ™‚

  3. Forestwood says:

    Surprisingly pretty aren’t they?

  4. de Wets Wild says:

    That something so prickly can be so beautiful at the same time.

    As for Graham, I sincerely hope he can receive the medical care which he obviously needs so desperately…

  5. Prior... says:

    Love your humor – haha haha – and funny how they come up with names
    And lovely flower Janet

  6. I love the way such sweet and colorful flowers grow from a harsh plant. Nice photo, Janet!

  7. Dan Antion says:

    That’s a beautiful cactus and photo. I love that you captured a bee.

  8. Prickly but beautiful. That could probably apply to lots of us. πŸ™‚

  9. That bee is digging in! They’re beautiful flowers.

  10. I’m always amazed by cactus flowers!

  11. Amy says:

    So beautiful! Love the pink color. πŸ’—

  12. Your Madonna comment made me laugh really hard (and out loud), Janet. From an artistic standpoint of symbolism, I can see how the flowers could represent the nipples, though it would have been easier to imagine if there had only been one strategically placed flower per Mammilaria πŸ˜‰

    • πŸ™‚ I’m glad someone enjoyed that comparison, Madison. The top part of her outfits always reminded me of the “old days” when women in movies always seemed to have pointed chest. I still think it’s a weird comparison here, but hey, it’s good for a laugh.

  13. lolaWi says:

    beautiful flowers!

  14. Jet Eliot says:

    Fun post, Janet, your words. Also really enjoyed the cactus photo. Seeing flowers on cactus is very special, and this one’s flowers are so cheerful and large. I like that you captured the big bee in it too.

  15. restlessjo says:

    Wonderful, aren’t they? πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  16. Resa says:

    The beauty of some cacti flowers amazes me. It’s a visual oxymoron.

  17. It looks so pretty!!!!