Guest Author - Connie Krochmal
Every area of the country has gardens that will be of interest to those who love cacti and succulents. Here are highlights from some of those.
The Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden
The Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden is located in Miami, Florida. This garden covers over 80 acres, and contains a vast collection of rare tropical plants. In addition, this organization is at the forefront of plant conservation efforts. Their research focuses on endangered plants of Florida and the tropics. They work to re-introduce plants back into the wild when
possible. Their restoration work includes some rare cactus of the Florida Keys. These are the Key tree cactus, sometimes also called the robin tree cactus. They’re also working to preserve the semaphore cactus, which is also native to the Florida Keys.
Tucson Botanical Garden
This garden will definitely be of interest to cacti and succulent fans. It features a beautifully designed xeriscape garden of drought tolerant plants. This has saguaro and other species of interest. The garden covers around 5˝ acres.
Located in Flagstaff, Arizona, this started out as the home and studio of Frank Lloyd Wright, who liked to spend winters in the area. Around the architecture he also created unique landscapes of native flora, including
architectural cacti and succulents. Wright learned to use native plants after collaborating with Jens Jensen, who advocated the use of indigenous species in the prairie style. Taliesin West covers around 600 acres.
Eastern Botanical Gardens
There are any number of eastern botanical gardens that would be of interest to cacti and succulent fans. The New York Botanical Garden has a vast conservatory, which is considered to be the largest in the U.S. It has eleven separate growing seasons in the greenhouses, including a desert habitat.
The Atlanta Botanical Garden has a conservatory called the Fuqua Orchid Center. This beautifully designed greenhouse features various kinds of indoor gardens, including a desert garden. The entire botanical garden covers 30 acres.