Here are two things I learned about saguaro cacti, Carnegiea gigantea, when I was in Arizona last fall:
1) Some young saguaros get extra protection from growing in the shelter of a bush or tree. Today’s picture shows an instance of that, even if this saguaro had already grown to a medium size.
2) Some saguaros grow as a single column, while others develop arms that branch off that column. In this photograph, taken at Sabino Canyon in the northeast fringe of Tucson on October 2, 2014, I count six (or possibly seven) well-established arms emerging from near the base of the main column, plus the bud of a new arm about halfway up it.
© 2015 Steven Schwartzman