Mexico/Baja Norte: Boojum Trees
If giant cardon cacti don’t blow you away in Baja – the surreal boojum trees totally will! Boojum trees (Fouquieria columnaris in Latin) look like they belong to a different planet, yet they are endemic to Baja California and are found nowhere else on Earth. If fact the name “boojum” comes from Lewis Carrol’s “Alice In Wonderland”, a clear reference to their peculiar shape and appearance, resembling an upside down carrot. Boojum trees are from ocotillo family, so they are not cacti, but rather succulents. The plants grow slowly, putting on less than a foot of height per year. Boojums have been found at 70 to 80 feet in height. Boojums are completely protected in Mexico and harvesting the plant is illegal and carries hefty jail times.