Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
If youíre planning garden tours, here are details on some featuring cacti and succulents.
The UNAM Botanical Garden
Located in Mexico City, this is a must-see destination for cactus and succulent fans. It is also called the Jardin Botanica de la UNAM. This is part of the National Autonomous University of Mexico. Covering nearly 250 acres, this features many drought tolerant plants that will be of interest. The plants are arranged into collections according to the habitat and climatic zone. This has one of the best desert cactus collections anywhere. There are also many kinds of agaves and yuccas. Their National Agave Collection features over 140 kinds, or one half of the agaves that are indigenous to Mexico.
These are organized according to the habitat and climatic zone. They have one of the best desert cactus collections in the world with nearly 400 different species. There is also a Crassula Family collection with perhaps 2/3 of the echeverias known to be native to the region. The garden is one of the leaders in the plant conservation movement. They work to preserve and save endangered plants of Mexico.
They do propagation, re-introduction, and restoration back into the wild whenever possible. They work with native species of cacti and succulents as well as others. The garden is also involved in conservation work in the Chihuahuan desert in the Tehuacan-Cuicatlan Biosphere Reserve. This reserve, which is located within the state of Oaxaca and Puebla, has many kinds of cactus and succulents, including tree cactus and the bottle palm or ponytail. Over 20 species found in this reserve donít occur anywhere else in Mexico.
The Denver Botanic Garden
When visiting the West, do plan on visiting this well-known garden. This botanical garden covers over 23 acres. Although there are many things to see at the garden, it is perhaps most widely known for its expansive Rock Alpine Garden. The alpines cover over an acre. It features many rare kinds of plants, including succulents, such as the hardy iceplants, along with bulbs and shrubs suitable for alpine plantings.