Ocotillo is not a true cactus. For much of the year, the plant appears to be an arrangement of large spiny dead sticks, although closer examination reveals that the stems are partly green. With rainfall, the plant quickly becomes lush with small (2–4 cm), ovate leaves, which may remain for weeks or even months.
Bathing in water that contains crushed flowers or roots has been used to relieve fatigue.
Native Americans are known to place the flowers and roots of ocotillo over fresh wounds to slow bleeding.
Ocotillo is also used to alleviate coughing, achy limbs, varicose veins, urinary tract infections, cervical varicosities, and benign prostate growths.
Fresh flowers are sometimes used in salads and have a tangy flavor.
Flowers are collected, dried, and used for tisanes.
The flowers are a crimson red. This one is from my yard. It can aldo. E used to build fence or as a walking stick.