Cactus chasing in the Utah desert

The last month and a half of this internship has been filled with long drives through Utah’s extensive desert country.  Initial activities have mainly been surveying populations of listed cactus species to help see the population trends over time.  Traveling through Utah in search of cacti has allowed me to see the beautiful desert ecosystems of both the Colorado Plateau in the east and the Great Basin of the west.

As the weather warms, our internship activities are transitioning to seed collection preparation for the Seeds of Success program.  I am looking forward to continuing to learn the region’s native plants (such as Sphaeralcea grossulariifolia seen below) and viewing more of Utah’s vast landscape.


Globemallow filled valley of the Great Basin






Cassie Heredia

Richfield, Utah

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