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To look at things is very different from seeing it – Oscar Wilde

Spring blooming at Peridot Mesa, AZ

SONY ILCE-7RM5, f/5.6, 1/2000 sec, ISO 250

Peridot Mesa is situated on the traditional lands of the Apache tribe in Gila County, Arizona, (1.5 hours east of where we live). The tribe has a rich history in the area, dating back thousands of years, and their culture is deeply intertwined with the land. Today, the Apache tribe continues to live in the region and maintain a strong connection to their ancestral territory. 

The scenic mesa is situated in the Tonto National Forest, surrounded by rugged mountains and valleys, and is known for its stunning displays of spring wildflowers. The area is home to a diverse range of plant species, which create a vibrant landscape during the spring season if the conditions for a spring bloom are met.

One of the most notable wildflowers that bloom in Peridot Mesa during the springtime are the California poppies. These bright orange flowers cover the hillsides and valleys, creating a stunning contrast against the surrounding landscape. The California poppy is the official state flower of California, but it can also be found in other parts of the western United States, including Arizona.

The California poppy is a hardy plant that thrives in dry, arid conditions. It is known for its ability to adapt to various soil types and can grow in rocky or sandy areas. The flowers bloom in the spring, typically from March to May, and can last for several weeks. They are a favorite of pollinators, such as bees and butterflies, and provide an important food source for these insects.

The mesa offers several hiking trails that wind through the hillsides, providing stunning views of the wildflowers and surrounding landscape. It is a popular destination for nature enthusiasts and photographers, who come to capture the beauty of the area’s springtime wildflowers therefore, we opted to go on a Monday. 

We were the first ones and even though there were other parties coming later in the morning, we had enough privacy to enjoy the gorgeous display and take (some) photos for hours.

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