AZ Part 2: Desert Botanical Garden...

I have to apologize in advance for this long post but we were blown away by this place and I just have to share!

Founded by the Arizona Cactus and Native Flora Society and established at this site in 1939, the Desert Botanical Garden has more than 21,000 plants, one-third of which are native to the area, including 139 species which are rare, threatened or endangered.

Of special note are the rich collections of agave and cacti, focusing on plants adapted to desert conditions, including an Australian collection, a Baja California collection and a South American collection. Several ecosystems are represented: a mesquite bosque, semi desert grassland, and upland chaparral. We delighted in meandering throughout it all.

We arrived in the later afternoon to avoid the heat but yet see all the beauty best seen in the sunshine. We were not disappointed.

We stayed for the sunset because we came to experience the Garden in a new light!

The Bruce Munro: Sonoran Light at Desert Botanical Garden exhibit showcases eight large-scale, light-based installations using an inventive array of materials and hundreds of miles of glowing fiber optics. Located throughout the Garden, British artist Bruce Munro’s site-specific exhibition reflects his unique interpretation of the Sonoran Desert.
We patiently waited in the warm desert air for the sun to set and for the 'show' to start.
Field of Light, was the first piece we saw. It featured 30,000 individual spheres of gently blooming light that were nestled on the hillside of the Garden Butte, cascading down onto the Sonoran Desert Nature Loop Trail.

The Temperate Zone is Munro’s interpretation of the ingenious cooling pots created by the indigenous population of the Southwest hundreds of years ago... all made with plastic bottles.

This was probably our favorite installation- Water-Towers, where 58 glowing towers grace the Garden among the iconic saguaro cacti. These towers are also made of plastic bottles filled with water and fiber optics. BEYOND cool.
Munro is best known for these large immersive light-based installations which are inspired primarily by his interest in shared human experience and connection. Being in this garden, having the day turn into night, we felt a special connection to this amazing place. What an incredible day in Arizona. It will be hard to top.

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Nickanddeb Bako said...

Spectacular pictures!!

For Travel's Sake said...

I love the cacti. I bet that is a Native American Dream vacation. All sorts of yummy things to eat... :)
Great pictures. The lights are interesting. Seems like the perfect venue. A warm desert. Perfect for strolling in the evenings.

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