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The Night Flower by Lara Hawthorne

The Night Flower by Lara Hawthorne

The Night Flower by Lara Hawthorne is a beautifully crafted true story of a Saguaro cactus’s life cycle. With a focus on the blooming of a Saguaro’s flower, The Night Flower also explains how important the cactus is to numerous animals found in the desert.

With a large focus on birds, this wonderful book is attractive for kids of many ages. My kindergartner was enamored with the drawings and asked a lot of questions. As a birder, I was well acquainted with the birds, but no so much with the other creatures featured. This made answering some of the questions particularly difficult. Labels on the animals, like done in The Hike, would have helped!

The imagery above was particularly interesting and generated a great deal of questions. It’s a fascinating display of hunting that could have used a bit more explanation.

Saguaro cactus diagram showing the night flower

We loved the detailed diagram of a Saguaro. We were surprised to learn how old this cactus is before it grows its first “arm”.

Overall, The Night Flower is a fun read with great art work. We learned a lot about the Saguaro and the animals that use both the cactus and its fruit in the desert.

Learn more about Saguaros from the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, a fascinating place to visit!

The night flower up close