Monday, April 20, 2020

Sand Blazing Star

In an excursion to the Sonoran Desert last Saturday in the Orocopia Mountains, south of Joshua Tree NP, I saw the sand blazing star, also known as the white-bract blazing star and ku'u (Mentzella involucrata). I initially thought it was the ghost flower which I've seen quite a few of, but the ghost flower actually mimics the sand blazing star to attract bees that would otherwise ignore it (the sand blazing star has nectar and the ghost flower does not). 
The flower has a translucent quality that reminds me of the ghost flower. 

It has five creme/yellow petals with peach streaks on the inside and it flowers from January to May. Native Americans collected the seeds in June after the flowers lost their petals and ground them into a peanut butter like consistency for food. I thought I'd not seen it before, but just found a post I did on it in 2010

1 comment:

  1. I thought this was the most stunning thing we saw that morning. It is so luminescent, so delicate for such a harsh environment. I felt so lucky to see one!