Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Prickly Pear and the Busy Bees


Prickly pear cactus is probably the most common cactus I can see here in Southern California.
Prickly Pear Cactus Among Yellow Wildflowers, Lake Hodges
From the coastal trails, to the inland hills and to the mountains, they are just everywhere. Bathing under the warmth of the sun, or coated with snow,
Prickly Pear Cactus in Snow, Mt Laguna
prickly pears have established their presence. Because they are almost everywhere here, some people may refer to them as "weed". Maybe a weed for some, but food for others, especially for these busy bees.
Busy Bees on Prickly Pear Flower
Notice how the bee in the top flower buried himself deeply, so busy enjoying the sweet nectar of the prickly pear. And here is one bee diving into the flower,
Diving Bee
so busy collecting pollens. Notice the happy face in this bee, probably so filled with nectar already :) .

Happy Bee
I cropped the above picture of the happy bee to be able to show the face more clearly :)
Cropped Picture of Happy Bee
Well, I do understand the busyness of the bees, for the taste of the pollen may really be something for them to dive for, plus the beauty of the prickly pear cactus flower, for me is such a sight to behold.
Busy Bees' Heaven, Prickly Pear Cactus Blossom
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  1. I didn't realize prickly pears were common in San Diego. Interesting to see the contrast of how they appear in hot and cold seasons; both are gorgeous. Love the happy bee on the blossom. :)

  2. A very living moment with the bees. Without the bees, the flowers will not quiet, without us the mountain must be lonely.

  3. If I ever win the lotto I am so buying a camera like yours. And lessons.

  4. Cool, the cactus grows under that snow? I didn't know that.

  5. Diverse, simple, beautiful...


  6. Beth, fascinating! The flower glows, especially the center part- appears to have neon lights there. Don't get too close, Betchai -those bees might sting you.

  7. I really like the flowers of the prickly pear cactus. The only times I've ever seen them are when I've looked at some of your pictures. Now I'm hooked.

  8. Oh..they are referred to as weeds? Weeds are pesky useless plants. But the prickly pears are a source of food bees..which is good.

  9. Interesting! You managed to capture the happy face of the bee? Haha!

  10. Miss Beth, I think they are also common here in the Philippines... Dunno, I might be wrong but the flowers are not mostly yellow. Red is more common...

    Very nice close-ups. And I think the bee smiled when you took the pic... :D

  11. It looks similar to when the bees gorge on our huge Magnolia flowers. They have huge pods of nectar in them, and the bees just love them.

  12. Incredible photos, betchai! They are really cheery, divine, and absolute joy!

  13. these photos are inspiring ms beth, they are all full of life...

  14. Beautiful pics, betchai. I just love the's hard to capture them in between flowers but you've done it!

  15. is that the same cactus they can be eaten? the bees are so busy, and so were you taking their photos. =)

    i don't think I'll have much guts to take photos of bees, afraid of being stung if i startle them =)

  16. Oh my dayz, the Bee is so so cute, I love it!

  17. Haha! Look at that bee in action.