Garden Luncheon with Mary Irish
Sun., Mar. 24 — 12 to 1:30 pm
Spend a spring afternoon at Tucson Botanical Gardens, enjoy lunch catered by Acacia and hear renowned garden writer Mary Irish speak about the trials and triumphs of gardening in the Sonoran Desert. After lunch, the winner of Growdown! The Great Tucson Garden Design Challenge will be announced, and Mary will sign copies of her latest book, A Place All Our Own: Lives Entwined in a Desert Garden. Tickets: $50.
Seating is limited. Reserve your space online or contact Katherine Hougland at 326-9686 Ext. 25. A directory of guests will be available at will call prior to seating in the Pavilion.
About Mary Irish
Mary Irish is a garden writer, lecturer and educator who lived in Arizona for 25 years. She is a native Texan who returned to her home state in 2012. She and her husband Gary currently live in Castroville, Texas–a historic town in the South Texas plains.
She is the author, with Gary Irish, of numerous books including, Agaves, Yuccas and Related Plants (Timber Press, 2000) Gardening in the Desert (The University of Arizona Press, 2000), Arizona Gardener’s Guide (Cool Springs Press, 2003), Gardening in the Desert of Arizona (Cool Springs Press, 2008), Perennials for the Southwest (Timber Press, 2006) and Trees and Shrubs for the Southwest (Timber Press, 2008). Her newest book: A Place All Our Own has just been published by University of Arizona Press.
Mary is also a frequent contributor to national and regional publications including American Gardener and NMPro. She has worked as a consultant on projects for the Sunnylands Center and Garden in Rancho Mirage, California, Myriad Botanical Garden in Oklahoma City, the City of Scottsdale, the Xeriscape Demonstration Garden in Glendale, Arizona, and numerous homeowner associations and private gardens.
Mary teaches classes regularly on use and cultivation of agaves and succulents, woody plants, desert palms and desert perennials. Her plant interests range widely with agaves and their relatives, bulbs and drought hardy perennials at the top of the list.
Irish served as the Director of Public Horticulture at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix for 11 years ending in 1999. She served on the Board of the Arizona Nursery Association for 10 years, of Native Seeds/SEARCH for three years and of Boyce Thompson Arboretum for nine years, six as the Chair. She is currently heading up the plant sales program at the San Antonio Botanical Garden.
She has a B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin and M.S. in Geography from Texas A&M University.
About the Book
Reviewers have called A Place All Our Own: Lives Entwined in a Desert Garden “insightful” and “graceful” and Irish’s writing “exquisite.” The story of how she and her husband transformed the barren ground around their Scottsdale home into a garden oasis for native plants and animals is an adventure that any gardener can relate to and any desert dweller can learn from. Learn more about the book and read an excerpt. Copies will be available for sale at the signing after the luncheon.
This spring, join us for Growdown! The Great Tucson Garden Design Challenge. Four esteemed local landscape designers will go trowel to trowel in a three-day competition to transform an empty 15’ x 20’ plot into “the best” Tucson pocket garden. This year’s theme is Small Gardens, Big Ideas, and the emphasis will be on creating a small, inviting usable garden that would thrive under local desert conditions at a home with limited yard space.
On Friday, March 22 and Saturday, March 23, visitors can meet the designers and learn first-hand some of the techniques and approaches used in creating their gardens. Judging and the awards luncheon will take place on Sunday, March 24. The gardens will remain on display at Tucson Botanical Gardens through May 2013 (tentative, depending on upcoming construction projects). All programs, unless ticketed, are included with admission. See more details and the full Growdown! schedule.
Event Sponsor: Wallace Research Foundation
Media Sponsor: Tucson Lifestyle Home & Garden magazine
Luncheon Sponsors: Cox Communications; Metal Arts Village
Awards Sponsor: Bill Trimmer, The Painted Gecko
Garden Friend Sponsor: DeConcini McDonald Yetwin & Lacy P.C.
Community Design Partners
B & B Cactus Farm
Bella Vista Landscaping, LLC
Casa Blanca Horticulture
Cesar Rascon Masonry
D & D Materials
David Rojo Metal Fabrication
Debra Raeber Handbuilt Planters
Desert Survivors Nursery
Dorado Rock & Materials
Drake Built Steel Projects
Fitzgerald & Sons Carpentry
Grant Road Lumber
Jose Guerrero Planting and Irrigation
Kalamazoo Materials, Inc.
Mesquite Valley Growers
Mountain States Wholesale Nursery
Nick Tranmer Sculptor
Pioneer Sand Company, Inc.
Plants for the Southwest
Pottery Blow Out!
R.O. Landscape & Tree Service
REALM, an Urban Organics Co.
Santa Rita Steel & Hardware Co.
Santa Theresa Tile Works
Tucson Bobcat and Shade
Tucson Turf LLC
Windows and Walls
Zona Decorative Concrete & Construction