In my wanderings around arid hillsides near Cottonwood and Sedona I have visited with many relatively short trees, adorned with many spiky branches. They most closely resemble bottle brushes. At first glance these yellow palo verde seem to me to be humble, quietly blending into the arid hillsides where they squat. Only as I have become more familiar with them have I begun to appreciate their many adaptations and assets.
From my first encounter, I fell in love with their droppings. At first I thought these to be branches. After I first pulled one of the intricately grained and curled sticks out of the ground I realized these were roots. Sometimes they take the shape of creatures like a snail or a dinosaur. Many times, bird’s wings and deer heads emerge from their tangle. These roots can be six to eight feet long.
"With all the beauty surrounding me here above the Verde Valley, how could I not create more beauty?"