Brilliant saguaros in the Arizona desert

saguaro cactus all in a line

Saguaro cactus are one of the trees of the desert. But if you have ever observed them closely, you’ll notice that they naturally space themselves out, keeping an almost exact distance between one and the next. It’s almost as though they were planted in a carefully aligned plot by an obsessive gardener.

Imagine my surprise when I found this line of saguaros, all edged up against the rocky cliff. They shouldn’t be doing that. Against the rules!

And then I had an epiphany. These cactus were doing exactly what they should be doing, growing where the water would run off the cliff and nourish them. They knew. I was the ignorant one.

I need to remember that. Sometimes the normal rules of what works and what doesn’t don’t work. It pays to be flexible.

After all, when you come right down to it,
how many people speak the same language
even when they speak the same language?

~Russell Hoban~

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