The Wilbur D. May Arboretum and Botanical Garden has 13 acres developed, with 10 acres still to be completed. The design concept for a new Cactus and Succulent Garden is the first step toward implementing a series of new gardens to continue to expand the Arboretum and enhance its mission of education, research, conservation, and to demonstrate how introduced plant species and native plants grow in a high desert environment.

The Big Idea

Over the past thirty years, 13 of the original 23 acres have been developed into gardens and groves enjoyed by more than 100,000 visitors annually. An implementation plan was developed by Washoe County to creatively and innovatively develop the remaining 10 acres of land, including the creation of a Cactus and Succulent Garden. The goal for this 2.5-acre garden is to showcase the types of plants that are well-adapted to the harsh climate of Northern Nevada’s short 120-day growing season.

Garden Vignettes

Chihuahuan, Sonoran, and South American Vignette

Sonoran Crevice Garden

Succulents of the World

Great Basin/ Native Nevada

Garden Regions

Your Support

This garden will demonstrate an alternative to traditional landscaping by introducing low water use plants and desert landscaping. After reviewing these illustrations, we hope you are as excited as we are, and you agree - this garden will uniquely represent diverse geographic regions of the world while offering educational areas with learning opportunities for all visitors.

We hope you enjoyed these renderings and learning more about the future Cactus and Succulent Garden. Whether you are an individual, family, small business, corporation, or visitor, we welcome your support as our partner - sharing our vision for a premier cactus and succulent garden exhibit. Single gifts of at least $1000.00 will be recognized in a visual display located within the garden.