Moonflowers in the desert

We’ve had a ton of rain this summer in Arizona. I’ve been frantically chopping weeds, but I let some of them grow to see what they would do. Particularly these broad-leafed things that I hoped would be flowers. They’re starting to bloom, and here’s what they look like:

According to PlantNet, the app I use to identify plants, these are either moonflower, or desert thorn flower, which are in the same family. They look identical to me! These flowers only open in the evening, after sunset, and close up again in the morning when the sun touches them.

We have an abundance of insects right now, especially butterflies. Last month, I noticed that there were caterpillars everywhere, and figured that by August, it would be butterfly city. And it is! Bright yellow butterflies. My husband was driving down the road and one got stuck in his windshield wipers. The thing is, the stupid butterfly was still crawling out of its chrysalis! In fact, the chrysalis was what got stuck on the car. The butterfly was already flying around. It eventually freed itself and flew away, despite the moving car. Desert bugs are tough.

Of all the things I expected to find in the desert, butterflies and moonflowers were not one of them. 🙂

One thought on “Moonflowers in the desert

  1. My goodness, how amazing!! I didn’t even know a butterfly could fly still inside its chrysalis. Your flowers are interesting and who knew moon flowers would look like that. A cross between Morning glory too.
    I am so glad you have such interesting finds in the place you are now. I love it!

    Like

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