The Charms of Las Vegas – the Granadilla one!

The path leading up a ridge on the way out of Las Vegas

Asparagus umbellatus in flower just above Las Vegas village

Las Vegas is one of my favourite places in South Tenerife to walk. The village itself is picturesque and crammed with little fertile fields rich in vegetables and fruits, and the area is green and varied with attractive barrancos and great vistas.

Today we walked up through the village, up the ridge above it on the yellow/white marked PR-TF 83.1 which eventually leads to the Lunar landscape.  We followed this path into the Las Vegas barranco with its rich diversity of plants and on past the Risco de Muerte (‘death cliff’), used by rock-climbers.

Palomera or flor de mayo (Pericallis lanata) flowering in December!

Despite the recent warm dry weather the vegetation was quite green and a few things were in flower, including some surprising ones, like the palomera or flor de mayo (Pericallis lanata) which is not normally in flower in December. Other flowers were appearing in their usual season although possibly a little early, such as Asparagus (Asparagus umbellatus), Tasaigo (Rhamnus crenulata), Canary Lavender (Lavandula canariensis), and Bryony (Bryonia verrucosa). In addition I saw the first almond blossom of the season blooming in the Las Vegas barranco.  The butterflies were also active with a Canary Blue and a Clouded Yellow.  We also flushed out several groups of partridge as we passed.

Spiny buckthorn (Rhamnus crenulata)

After walking on the loop of path which goes directly under the Risco de muerte,   where we saw Tree Houseleek (Aeonium arboreum) and Paniqueso (Lobularia canariensis) in flower,  we rejoined the main path.  Then we walked a couple of  hundred yards further up and then turned right to go round behind the cliffs and join a track.  Going left to climb with the track we joined a footpath going to the right to cross a barranco.  We were delighted to find this path, which we had walked about a year ago, has been cleared and made easier for walking.  Before it had been very faint and needed attention (and a GPS track) to keep on it.  Now it is easy to follow.  It led us to a rough track going downhill, and then we turned left to go up Mt Tames for lunch.  Again we found the path had been renovated and made easier.  On Mt Tames we had warm sunshine, and were protected from the wind so we could enjoy the panoramic views as we ate.

Tree houseleek (Aeonium arboreum) hanging from the Risco de muerte

Returning to the rough track we continued downhill on it for a few more yards before reaching a cairn marking the continuing path, which again had been cleared and made easier to follow.   The steep downhill passed by a huge and stately pine tree, and continued down to meet a track near an old roofless finca.    We continued down the track, passing the first green/white signposted path to the right (part of the circular from Las Vegas PR-TF 242).  When we met the next green/white signpost we went right onto the footpath and followed the signs back to Las Vegas.  Entering the village I saw some Verode (Kleinia nerifolia) in flower beside the road.

Verode (Kleinia nerifolia)

About Sally Whymark

When I retired and moved out to Tenerife a few years ago, one of the things I really wanted to do was go walking in the mountains. The scenery is very dramatic, and varied. The views are amazing. The native birds and butterflies and other fauna are remarkable. But the flowers - they're just stunning. Little did I know how this would fire up my interest in plants. While living in England, I had always had an interest in flowers and plants, indeed I ran a plant nursery with my husband for many years, but had not spent a great deal of time pursuing botany. But when walking in Tenerife, I noticed all the unfamiliar shapes of the local flowers, and longed to find out more about them. There are literally hundreds of species endemic to just Tenerife (or even just one part of it), the Canary Islands, or Macronesia (the Atlantic Islands, including Madeira, Canaries and Azores). They are so exciting, and so many of them are really showy as well. So I have started this blog to share with you my excitement at all the great sights I see when walking in Tenerife. I hope you'll enjoy it - and want to come here and experience it for yourself.

Posted on December 29, 2011, in South Tenerife, Walks in Tenerife and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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