I think not….
When a person who has never been to the Arizona desert, shuts their eyes and visualizes the “desert” landscape, they normally think of a picture of sand dunes from “Lawrence of Arabia” or maybe Star Wars “Tatooine“! Some may think of a lone tumbleweed rolling across the sand. But in reality, Arizona deserts are not the arid, parched, hot wasteland they are perceived to be. Many times when showing a customer Sedona real estate, they perceive Sedona weather to be just as hot as Phoenix. Arizona has many climate zones and the weather in Sedona is not at all the same as Phoenix. Sedona is in the transitional area below The Great Basin Desert.
Arizona is Home to All 4 North American Deserts
Actually, Arizona is the only state that is home to all 4 of the major deserts in North America. Here are the 4:
1. The Great Basin which is the largest of the North American deserts and is ranked 9th overall in the world. Most of the area is in Nevada, small parts of Utah, Idaho and Northern Arizona area. It transitions to the Colorado Plateau and further south into Red Rock Country.
2. The Mojave (number 21 on the list of world deserts) is mainly in Southeastern California but juts into Arizona on the western area of the state.
3. The Chihuahuan (ranked 10th) is largely in Mexico but bleeds over into Arizona, New Mexico and Texas.
4. The Sonoran covers most of Central & Southern Arizona from Phoenix to the south into Mexico. The Sonoran Desert is 14th on the list of world deserts. The pictures below come from the displays of the Desert Botanical Garden.
Desert Botanical Garden
I had an opportunity to visit the Desert Botanical Garden. It was a very peaceful and relaxing visit. The Gardens feature Sonoran Desert plants. Of course Spring is one of the best times to visit the Gardens. The weather is great and the plants, trees and flowers are blooming. Most of the birds and other little creatures including bunnies are starting the mating rituals. There are some roadrunners that habitat there and if you visit you might just catch more than a glimpse of them!
There are over 140 acres with 50,000 plants, trees and other exhibits including restaurants and a company store. The Desert Botanical Garden is one of only 24 gardens accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.
We decided to take the guided tour and we are glad we did. It gives you an overview of the garden, the mission and the vision of that has been carried forward from the original founding members of which Gertrude Webster was a dominant member. Their goal was to educate others to appreciate the Sonoran Desert and all it has to offer. The Garden continues today to promote the original stewardship set by the founders. The facilities are used for fund raisers, adult classes and trips, kids programs, digital learning for students and teachers. You can even learn horticulture and landscaping techniques. The Garden also provides scholarship opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. There is also a Desert Botanical Garden Research Department.