FLORA OF THE TURQUOISE TRAIL REGION
The Turquoise Trail winds its way through hills, mountains and plateaus, reaching 10,600 feet above sea level in the Sandia Mountains. Pinon and juniper abound, along with some mountain mahogany. Ponderosa pines and white firs occupy the higher elevations and in the lower areas and and arroyos are chamisa, leafy oak, Gamble oak, Apache plume, New Mexico olive, wafer ash and four-wing saltbush.
Keep an eye out for cacti and other native plants, including banana and narrowleaf yucca, cane cholla, plains prickly pear, sagebrush, Indian paintbrush, desert marigold, New Mexico thistle, rose heath, red dome blanketflower, Mexican hat, tahoka daisy, asters, Fendler’s rockcress, Rocky Mountain beeplant, evening primrose and hundreds of others.
Grasses grow in a staggering array of sizes, shapes and colors, from New Mexico feathergrass and Western wheatgrass to to rabbitsfoot grass and buffalo grass. Learn more about the flora of this region at the Cerrillos Hill State Park Visitor Center.