Movie westerns were popular when I grew up and I was one of their biggest fans. Nothing became a greater symbol of the West than the Saguaro cactus. So, I was thrilled to visit the Saguaro National Park in Tucson, Arizona, the home of this rare, fascinating and iconic desert plant. I couldn’t miss the Saguaros along the park road. They’re everywhere. Though plentiful around Tucson, Saguaros are a rare cactus species that is fully protected by Arizona law and grows only in the Sonoran desert. There is no better place than the Saguaro National Park to learn about them.
The tour conducted by a park ranger at the Red Hills Visitor Center was the highlight of my visit. The ranger conducted the tour with enthusiasm and she knew a lot about cacti in general and the Saguaro in particular. For example, it’s the largest cactus in North America, it grows 50 feet tall or more, it must be shaded by other plants during the first 3 years, it’s pollinated by bats, it blooms for one day in Spring, its fruit ripens in August, the fruit is used for jams, jelly, candy and wine, it may take 60 years or more for arms to start growing, and I could go on and on. The ranger clearly demonstrated why Saguaros are special and her tour was informative and entertaining.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.