Cholla Cactus Garden, Joshua Tree National Park, California, USA
© Bryan Jolley/Tandem Stills + Motio
Info. Cholla Cactus Garden, Joshua Tree National Park, California, USA
We're at Joshua Tree National Park in south-east California, United States. The American park contains over 3,000 square kilometres of land and is part of two deserts – the Mojave Desert and the Colorado Desert. It was declared a national monument in 1936 and was redesignated as a park in 1994. That status protects a wide variety of plant and animal life, including the Joshua tree, which can be found growing mostly in the hills on the Mojave side of the park.
The Cholla Cactus Garden you see here lies near the centre of the park in what is called the Pinto Basin. Visitors can safely pass through this prickly section via a nature trail that allows a close-up view of a large collection of cholla cactus, which is spread out over four hectares. The cholla cactus is recognisable by its dense yellow spines, which grow on top of a dark lower trunk. The plant is sometimes called the teddy bear cholla because it looks cuddly and soft. But don't get too close – or even touch it at all. Stem pieces fall off easily and the spines can puncture your skin and be painful to remove. Let’s just enjoy the view from a safe distance.