Tuesday, 08 July 2014 06:37

Music, butterflies & art at Desert Botanical Garden

The Desert Botanical Garden The Desert Botanical Garden

It looks the Valley is finally settling in for a typical spring: blue skies, mild temperatures and sunny days. The good thing is that all that rain created a lush desert landscape (the mountains are covered in green); and now is an ideal time for a visit to the Desert Botanical Garden.

Not only will the wildflowers be in bloom, but the spring butterfly exhibit (9:30a-5pm daily) is in full swing in the Marshall Butterfly Pavilion through early May. You can also tour bronze sculptures by Native American artist, Allan Houser (Allan Houser: Tradition to Abstraction) and even a couple of glass sculptures by last year’s featured artist Dale Chihuly.

Situated on 145 acres of land among the red-hued rocks at Papago Park, the Desert Botanical Garden is home more than 50,000 arid-land plants (including almost 40 species of rare, threatened or endangered plants from deserts across the globe). The garden, located on the Phoenix-Tempe border near the Phoenix Zoo, features thematic trails, desert wildflowers, numerous succulents and tour guides to assist you in learning more about the plants and their natural environment.

Earlier this month, the Garden opened its spring jazz concert series, which runs through the end of June. Held Friday evenings on the Ullman Terrace, the spring series offers a blend of live music, catered cuisine and a cash bar beneath the desert night sky.

Don’t forget, the Garden’s annual plant sale takes place this weekend: Saturday, March 20th 7am—5pm and Sunday, March 21st 9am—5pm. There is no admission charge and you have access to area horticulturists, landscape designers and volunteers who can answer questions about growing your garden in the desert.

There are plenty of other regular features, happenings and offerings at the Garden, like the garden shop, which is open daily from 9am until 5pm and their library open noon until 4pm as well daily guided tours (Oct—May), weekly year-round bird walks and evening events like the Spiked! Thursdays at DBG, featuring live music, cocktails and cuisine in the Steele Herb Garden.

Take note, the second Tuesday of the month, Desert Botanical Garden offers free admission from 1pm until 8pm. This includes the spring butterfly exhibit in the Marshall Butterfly Pavilion in March and April.


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