Monday, September 5, 2016


we were off early from our lodging in order to try and beat a bit of the heat. We did eventually succumb to the Tucson heat, but first we got to enjoy the Tucson Botanical Garden. 

There are a number of specialty gardens on the grounds - butterfly, cactus, native American crop garden, wildflower garden, Xeriscape, and several more.

Barrel Cactus Buds

I was immediately attracted to the butterfly garden as there were a number of Queen butterflies flying about. 

Queen Butterfly

Queen Butterfly
There was also a butterfly greenhouse which housed orchids, pitcher plants, and other specialty plants. Within this building was also a small display of poison dart frogs which were very colorful but elusive.

Poison Dart Frog

Poison Dart Frog #2
 I enjoyed the Tohono O’odham Path which portrayed how these people made use of the native vegetation. All throughout the gardens there were a number of lizards that enjoyed sunning and posing for the camera.

Desert Spiny Lizard

Desert Spiny Lizard

Our next stop was the Ted DeGrazia Gallery and Gardens located on the Northeast side of the city. Ted DeGrazia was a painter and sculptor who became famous in the 50's and 60's for his whimsical art. UNICEF asked to use his painting "Los Ninos" for their holiday card in 1960. Millions of the card were sold. The gardens and building were all designed and built by DeGrazia, and are rustic and in the style of the Southwest. 

We thought that there would be a lot of art displayed in the gardens but this did not seem to be true. After a warm walk along the grounds, and wandering in the gallery it was time for a change of pace. We enjoyed lunch under a rustic ramada before heading off to our last gallery of the day, The Center for Creative Photography.

Sky Art

The Center is located on the campus of Arizona University which is a metropolitan campus, and it was student move in day! Thus it was difficult to get directions to the Center or parking. We persevered and found our way with the help of a couple of students. The collection consists of more than 90,000 works by 2,000 photographers. This includes works of Elliot Porter, Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Alfred Stieglitz, to name only a few.  There were only a few photographs on display, and a note by Ed Weston about his crop of green peppers that he had just received. (He is well known for his still life photography of peppers that was evocative in nature.)

After a period of rest and recovery at our motel, we headed back to Theresa’s Mosaic for another Mexican dinner. There was more storm activity to the East of the city which we enjoyed viewing while dining. I did not have an opportunity to photograph any of the lightning show but nature put on a good show. The food was excellent once again.

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