Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park
Summer Hours are in Effect:
The park is open daily from 6 am to 3 pm, with the day's final admission at 2 pm, one hour before closing time so the last-admitted guests of the day have a full hour to explore the gardens and trails.
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A variety of plants from the world's deserts await you at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park.
Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park is the place to discover the intricate beauty and many faces of Arizona's oldest and largest botanical garden. Featured are plants from the world's deserts, towering trees, captivating cacti, sheer mountain cliffs, a streamside forest, panoramic vistas, many natural habitats with varied wildlife, a desert lake, a hidden canyon, specialty gardens and more.
The Arboretum was founded in the 1920s by mining magnate Col. William Boyce Thompson. In 1917 Col. Thompson served as co-leader of a Red Cross mercy mission to Russia, where he came to understand the importance of plants as the ultimate source of a large portion of mankind's food, clothing, and shelter. It was then, that he determined to use his great wealth to improve the use of plant resources. The Arboretum is one of his legacies.
Encompassing 323 acres, the Arboretum is Arizona's oldest and largest botanical garden. It was the first purely botanical institution in the inter-mountain states. The Arizona State Parks Board entered into agreement with the Boyce Thompson Arboretum Board and the University of Arizona in 1976 to cooperatively manage the Arboretum.
The University of Arizona also maintains a website for this park, with additional park information and photos. Learn more.
May 30: Saturday 'Lizard Walk' guided by "Wild Man Phil" Rakoci
8am. Sonoran Desert educator "Wild Man Phil" Rakoci, guides a walking tour in search of Ornate Tree Lizard and Western Whiprtails, Desert Spiny and Side-blotched Lizards. Bring a camera for close-up pictures of these colorful little reptiles. See photos and read more http://ag.arizona.edu/bta
June 6: Dragonfly Walk with Roger Racut
8:30am. Join photographer and dragonfly enthusiast Roger Racut on a Saturday 'odonate excursion' in search of Flame Skimmers, Blue Dashers and Mexican Amberwings at Ayer Lake and Arboretum fountains and water features. The special guest tourguide July 4 is ASU Professor Pierre Deviche - explore Pierre's excellent website azdragonfly.net to read more about dragonfly biology and see photos. Dragonfly walks are included with daily admission of $10, or $5 for ages 5-12. Read more: HERE
June 13: Saturday 'Lizard Walk' guided by Wild Man Phil and Steven Prager
8am. Sonoran Desert educator "Wild Man Phil" Rakoci and Arizona Audubon's Steven Prager guide a walking tour in search of Ornate Tree Lizard and Western Whiprtails, Desert Spiny and Side-blotched Lizards. Bring a camera for close-up pictures of these colorful little reptiles. See photos and read more http://ag.arizona.edu/bta
June 20: Saturday Plants-of-the-Bible Land walk guided by Dave Oberpriller
8am. Pomegranates, figs, pines and palms are all plants referenced in scriptures -- they can also be seen in the gardens at BTA. See photos and read more HERE
June 21: Tree Tour With Jeff Payne
8am. So, just what is an Arboretum? BTA staffer and Certified Arborist Jeff Payne leads this walk where visitors learn the answer to that often-posed question during a relaxed and leisurely guided tour through the forested areas of the Arboretum. Join Jeff for a chance to learn about the Arboretum's collection of oak and olive trees, native hackberry, mesquite and many more. Tree Tours are included with daily admission of $10, or $5 for ages 5-12. Read more: HERE
June 27: Geology walking tour with Scott McFadden (note 8am start time)
8am. Daily hours at BTA are 6am-3pm from May-through-September, and this tour moves to an 8am start time during summer months. See rocks and volcanic formations along our main trail on a guided tour that compresses almost two billion years of geologic history into just over one educational hour! Learn about Pinal schist, the volcanic origins of Picket Post Mountain and the Apache Leap tuff. See photos and read more HERE
June 28: Sunday Edible & Medicinal Desert Plants walk with Kathy & Tom Mcdonald
8am. Explore the Curandero Trail on this slow-paced guided walking tour, a one-hour walk where desert plant enthusiasts Kathy & Tom McDonald share their knowledge about the ways native plants have fed, healed and clothed Sonoran desert peoples for more than one thousand years. ** Please note: this tour explores the Curandero Trail, which has steep sections that are not suitable for visitors who use wheelchairs or walkers. Read more http://ag.arizona.edu/bta
- Alamo Lake
- Buckskin Mountain
- Cattail Cove
- Lake Havasu
- River Island
- Yuma Quartermaster Depot
- Yuma Territorial Prison
- Dead Horse Ranch
- Fort Verde
- Red Rock
- Riordan Mansion
- Slide Rock
- Verde River Greenway
- Boyce Thompson Arboretum
- Fool Hollow Lake
- Lost Dutchman
- Lyman Lake
- Tonto Natural Bridge