By: Paul S. Cilwa Viewed: 11/30/2020
Occurred: 9/3/2018
Topics/Keywords: #Arizona #DesertBotanicalGarden #Phoenix #Places #USA Page Views: 279
All the photos from my visit with friends to the Desert Botanical Garden.

Friends of Michael's from New York (who now live in Florida) came for a visit to the wild West; David had come specifically to see the Desert Botanical Garden, of which he learned from a magazine back home. Today Michael and I escorted David and his husband, Nick, to the place…a place I, myself, had not yet seen.

The plants were, in fact, breathtaking, as was the envionment in general. We were lucky; although it was hot the temperature stayed below 100°F.

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In the 1930s, a small group of local citizens became interested in conserving the fragile desert environment. One was Swedish botanist Gustaf Starck, who found like-minded residents by posting a sign, Save the desert, with an arrow pointing to his home. In 1936, they formed the Arizona Cactus and Native Flora Society (ACNFS) to sponsor a botanical garden to encourage an understanding, appreciation and promotion of the uniqueness of the worlds deserts, particularly the local Sonoran Desert.

Eventually Gertrude Webster, whose home encompassed all of what is today the neighborhood of Arcadia, joined the Society. She offered her encouragement, connections and financial support to establish the botanical garden in Papago Park.

Nick (L) and David (R) kept their iPhones busy taking pictures.

In addition to the plants, we also saw a lot of butterflies.

L2R: Michael, Nick, David

L2R: Michael, Nick, David

Me, just to prove I was here, too.

Nick and David

Nick and David

A section of the park has an example Apache dwelling of pre-colonial times. That pot, like similar pots made in Spain, is made of a slightly porous material. When liquid is stored in the pot, the slow evaporation through the material of the pot cools the contents by about 10°F.

Just outside the Desert Botanical Garden, but still within Papago Park, is the Hole In The Wall. David was pooped but Nick wanted to see it, so he and I made the additional short walk while David and Michael kept cool by the car.

The view through the hole is why anyone comes here.