Tucson’s Mission Garden

9 a.m. The alarm clock blares. Dirty, dusty shoes are pulled on. Later, sunscreen and a pair of sunglasses. It’s Saturday. On Saturdays and Sunday’s from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., volunteers travel to the base of “A” Mountain to pull weeds and pick the ripest of fruits and vegetables at the Mission Garden. “We’ve developed gardens trying to honor all of the cultures that … Continue reading Tucson’s Mission Garden

The Downfall of a Southwestern Icon?

Giant. Majestic. Old. And, brown? Deep in the Sonoran Desert near Gila Bend, Arizona, the giant saguaro cactuses thrive. Or they once did. Driving along the 8-Interstate, visitors pass miles of saguaro forests, where these towering cactuses dominate the rocky and arid landscape. In past decades, the saguaro is a green stripe in the surrounding brown region. In spring of 2017, however, these cactuses were … Continue reading The Downfall of a Southwestern Icon?

Water Effects on the Southwestern Springtime

In early March 2017 rain spattered across the Sonoran Desert. At Tumamoc Hill near Tucson, Arizona, seedlings and flowers sprung up atop the hillside research center. A week after the rains temperatures reached mid-90 degrees Fahrenheit for several days. The seedlings and flowers atop Tumamoc Hill sweltered and died in the heat. During that time, the region experienced little rain. “It looked like it was … Continue reading Water Effects on the Southwestern Springtime