The hardy ocotillo is one of the tallest and weirdest plants in the desert. It is a perennial shrub with long cane-like spiny stems that grow from a short trunk. Small 2 inch leaves will grow from the stems when there is enough moisture. Dense clusters of red tubular flowers grow from the end of the stems from March through June. The ocotillo also provides a dependable food source for hummingbirds when other spring plants are unable to bloom.
Ocotillo prefer a habitat that is very rocky, and where the soil is well drained. Areas such as rocky slopes, mesas, washes and desert grasslands. Container suitable. Zone 8+
Other Names: Slimwood, Coachwhip, Vine Cactus, Flaming Sword and Jacob's Staff.