Chiricahua National Monument

The wondrous Chiricahua National Monumental is located in southeastern Arizona and is almost-12,000 acres ranging from about 4,000 to almost 10,000 ft. in elevation. Amazing rock spires are everywhere that are the result of a volcanic eruption 27 million years ago.

Around 1000 plant species can be found in the Monument including many endemics. Interesting plants here include the Cane Cholla and Pincushion Cactus. The Javelina (similar to a wild boar) often eats the fruit and flesh of cactus. Other plants include the Prickly poppy (Argemone pleiacantha) which is found in the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts. Look for the common Pointleaf Manzanita (Arctostaphylos pungens) which dominates much of the area.

Englemann Spruce (Picea engelmanii) can be found here at the most southern reach of its range.


Banana Yucca

Banana yucca was an important food for pueblo people and native tribes, eating fresh and baked fruits and crisp stems. It also served in a multitude of other uses including soap making from roots, and rope and cords from the strong fibers. Women broke the extremely sharp points from the ends of leaves, keeping a long strand of fiber attached which was used for sewing. 

Banana Yucca plant in the desert
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