Sprawled out across five and a half acres, the Tucson Botanical Gardens features 16 urban gardens in total, each of which showcase a wide variety of flora and fauna. From the tranquility of the Zen Garden to the vibrancy of the Butterfly Garden, the Tucson Botanical Gardens is a must-visit when you are in the area.
The sixteen residential scaled gardens that you will find at the Tucson Botanical Gardens are individually themed, and are connected via pathways, making it easy to move between each one. Aloe Alley tends to be a favorite among many, especially when the Aloe are flowering, as clouds of hummingbirds always flock here. For even more birds, check out the Backyard Bird Garden, which also aims to educate the public on different ways in which people can easily attract more wild birds to their own garden. The Butterfly Garden features a range of seasonal plants that all attract regional butterflies, while the Butterfly Greenhouse is where you will find a seasonal Tropical Butterfly display. The Herb Garden is ever-fragrant with its impressive collection of culinary and medicinal herbs, while the Zen Garden is the perfect place to spend some time if you are looking for peace and quiet. For those who would like more in-depth information on all that they are seeing, there are docent-led tours of the Botanical Gardens throughout the week, which will not only teach you about the plant collections here, but also about the garden’s history.
The Tucson Botanical Gardens is all about conservation and education, which is why they host a variety of classes on a wide range of topics. Whether you want to be taught how to sketch different birds, learn about how to use aromatherapy to change your mood, or give yoga a try, there are classes held here almost every day of the week, throughout the year.
In addition to providing a feast for the eyes, the Tucson Botanical Gardens also produce food, and these are used, whenever possible, at Café Botanica, the garden’s on-site café. With a menu inspired by the culinary traditions of the Sonoran Desert and Northern New Mexico, the dishes that you will find here are all lovingly prepared by hand, from the Huevos Rancheros Botanica Style to the Botanica Hummus Board.
Gardens Gift Shops
The gift shops that you will find at the Tucson Botanical Gardens are definitely worth a browse, as they each stock a beautifully curated range of products that come from local artisans and businesses, with the majority of the items here being made in Tucson and the USA. Whether you are looking for garden-related items, nature books or even body care products, there is quite the selection to be found at the garden’s gift stores.
The Tucson Botanical Gardens considers itself to be a living museum, and it most definitely succeeds when it comes to educating the public on plants and wildlife. For this reason, when taking a stroll through the gardens, be sure to stay respectful to all that the garden offers, always staying on designated pathways and never picking any plants or flowers, no matter how pretty or fragrant they may be.