While humans decorate their homes for Christmas, nature’s been busy decorating her world. On a recent trip around the Willow City Loop in Gillespie County, hints of the holiday season were everywhere.
Reddened by cold, this pad from a prickly pear cactus (Opuntia engelmannii var. lindheimeri) would look especially festive hanging from a live oak. Unfortunately, bringing it indoors to hang alongside more traditional ornaments on a fir or a spruce would be ill-advised. Some of those spines are two inches long, and believe me — they’re more Scrooge than Santa!