Tuesday, May 23, 2023

The Desert Botanical Garden in Spring

At the end of April, Denis and I went to one of our favorite spots right here in the Phoenix metropolitan area-- the Desert Botanical Garden-- to see more spring blossoms before the heat of summer sets in. Does summer heat mean that nothing flowers in the garden? No. I can always find something in bloom there no matter what time of year I visit, but spring is a particularly glorious time.
Denis and I thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, and I took 215 photos. Now that I've gone through them all, it's time to share. Settle in with a snack and something to drink. Unlike Denis and me, you don't have to worry about sunglasses, sunscreen, a hat, and the crowds!
The entrance to the Desert Botanical Garden.

Insects were busy all over the garden gathering pollen and nectar.

Blanket flower

This is a Mexican petunia. The shrubs are often covered with flowers, and they have a long blooming season.

On the Desert Wildflower Loop Trail

Denis took a photo of one of the biggest saguaros in the garden. As you can see by its trunk and arms, it is swollen with water. Winter was very kind here (for a change).

Almost like an Impressionist painting...

From a distance, this California Buckwheat looks like small matted cotton balls. Close up you can see that they're pretty in a quiet sort of way.

One of the many busy, busy bees!

A view of the garden.

A single branch of a palo verde in bloom. Between palo verde trees and brittlebush, the desert can turn to gold in the spring. It's absolutely beautiful.

Comfrey in the Heritage Garden.
The Greeks and Romans used comfrey as medicine: "Besides being used to mend broken bones it’s also used for healing wounds and lung ailments, stopping heavy bleeding, and for topical skin treatments." And it's pretty, too.

Desert sunflowers

This pomegranate was in bloom.

Inside the Heritage Garden, looking toward the entrance.

A Magdalena pricklypear

This mourning dove and I were checking out the water feature in front of the Webster Auditorium.

More pricklypear blossoms

Lunch at the Patio Cafe with a pair of Gambel's Quail and (ultimately) two gopher ground squirrels.

This woodpecker was checking out the saguaro flowers which were just starting to open. The saguaro blossom is the Arizona state flower.

Desert spiny lizards were all over the garden. I kept trying to get a photo, and they kept zipping into the bushes. I only managed to catch this one peeking at me from behind a sign. These are good-sized lizards with thick bodies 6-8 inches long. You can just see some blue scales on its back, hinting at how pretty they can be.

Yerba Manza

Aloes don't have to bloom to be eye-catching.

This little guy came right up to me and almost touched one of my fingers with his beak. Then he sat on this twig and let me take his picture.

Red Spined Barrel Cactus

On our way out, I only managed to get this one photo of a roadrunner because one of the docents was so intent on getting her own that she scared him off. Grr!

I hope you enjoyed your virtual visit. I only wish I could take you all on a real tour of this beautiful place.


  1. Such beauty! I'm so glad you and Denis were able to go there when you did, Cathy. The desert really has some gorgeous plants and animals, and I love the way the DBG allows people to see that beauty in a sustainable way. Thanks for lightening up my week with these gorgeous photos!

  2. Wonderful pictures. Thank you for sharing them.

  3. So much beauty. Looks like a lovely trip.

  4. Just beautiful photos. What a way to start the day.

    1. Visiting the Desert Botanical Garden always lifts our spirits.

  5. Thanks for the gorgeous photo tour of these gardens! All those blooms are so beautiful. :D

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed my little virtual tour, Lark. :-)

  6. I always love seeing photos from your tripe there! Thanks for the peek! And a roadrunner!!!

    1. I always love seeing roadrunners wherever they may be.

  7. What stunning pictures, Cathy! I especially liked the bright yellow flower with the bee - what a great shot. It was fascinating to see the Saguaro swollen with water. Thanks for sharing your trip with us!


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