Aruba has an extraordinary flora. The plants native to Aruba are all very well adapted to the extreme circumstances that are prevalent here. Some species have, for example, small or leather-like leaves to resist loss of fluids through evaporation. Other species drop their leaves in the dry season to limit the loss of fluids. Because of this, many plants look alike and a large part of the island looks barren in the dry season. Various herbs survive this period as seed.
The plants best adapted to the climate are undoubtedly the cacti. Instead of leaves they have prickles, with which they resist evaporation and protect themselves against browsing. Cacti occur in various forms, some are barrel shaped, others grow like a bulb or have leave-like stalks. Of the three kinds of barrel cacti the Cadushi is the most common one. In this plant water is stored with which it can survive the dry season. This cacti is widely used in hedges, the trankeras. A rare species that can be seen at the gold mines of Miralamar at is the Cadushi di Colebra or Dama di Anochi (Lady of the Night). This cactus winds its way among other plants and blooms large white flowers at night. Most cactus species bloom at night, when they are plollinated especially by bats.
The best known tree on Aruba is with no doubt the Watapana that often has a bent shape due to the wind. Other species that grow into the wind have this shape as well. So the Camaris, that grow on the hills at the northern coast, also indicate the direction of the wind with their tops. Some trees only have flowers in the dry season. The yellow flowers of the Kibrahacha are then to be seen on the hills. Many of the kinds of trees are rare in Aruba. Some of them only remain with a few specimens. The Brasil, the Palisia Blanco and the evergreen Wayaca are some of these trees.
The moment it begins to rain Aruba begins to bloom. Grasses and herbs arise everywhere and the various trees and shrubs begin to bloom and get leaves again. Only then it can clearly be seen that many different kinds of plants occur.