Resilience amidst life's thorns
The Ocotillo (fouqueria splendors) pictured in this photo is one of my favorite chihuahuan desert signifiers. For most of the year it appears to be a collection of thorny dead branches exploding from the ground. The moment rain comes to the desert the dead stems suddenly sprout succulent thick leaves. If enough rain comes, the tips of each branch flame in bright trumpeting blossoms. These flowers call across what many see as a barren landscape to swift
hummingbirds to sip their nectar.
They can blossom and leaf more than once in yearly cycles depending upon water availability. They are genius in their self preservation- the moment the water is gone they drop the leaves that evaporate much water during the hot days. The flowers will continue to bloom feeding the flying migrants of birds bats and insects.
To flower fully and withdraw as resources dictate is an important ongoing spiritual lesson for me. Now it seems we are experiencing this en mass. The question is are you feeling imprisoned or on a restorative retreat?
My answer changes each day or time you might ask me.
Medicinal Qualities of Ocotillo:
Having an affinity for the lymphatic and circulatory systems this plant works to break up and move stagnation. Very beneficial in acute infections. Has a strong action at the 'root' of ailments especially in the lower half of the body. It has effect on emotional aspect of these systems- letting go on the physical and emotional heart level. It can also protect one as 'psychic barbed wire' Knowing when we are safe and barricading us when we need protection just as our immune system should when we trust and nurture it.