News & Events at Mission Garden


Mission Garden Open to Public
Wednesday – Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.

(April – September hours will be Wednesdays – Saturdays, 8 a.m. – noon)

Tai Chi in the Garden
Saturdays at 8 – 9 a.m. (no class on mornings with temps below 50 F.)
Scott Risano from Wind River Tai Chi Chuan gives classes in the garden every Saturday.

Vermilion flycatcher

Vermilion flycatcher

Birding in the Garden
Second Thursday of each month

Wander the garden and adjacent “A” Mountain Landfill in search of birds with Kendall Kroesen, Mission Garden Community Outreach Coordinator and Tucson Audubon Field Trip Leader.
April 11, 8 a.m.
May 9, 7 a.m.

Herbalist in the Garden
Third Saturday of each month
An expert from the Tucson Herbalist Collective will be at the garden to answer questions about the Moore Medicinal Herb Garden and the contemporary uses of traditional Southwest U.S. herbs.
April 20, 8 – 10 a.m.
May 18, 8 – 10 a.m.
June 15, 8 – 10 a.m.

Mano and metate

Mano and metate

Traditional Technologies in the Garden
Fourth Saturday of each month

Preservation Archaeologist Allen Denoyer gives visitors hands-on experiences with the kinds of ancient technologies archaeologists find evidence of in local excavations. These include atlatls, groundstone, “flintknapped” stone tools, and much more.
April 27, 9 a.m.—1 p.m., activity to be determined


Saturday March 30, 2019, 9 a.m. – noon
Using Mission Garden Herbs: Infusions, Tinctures and Salves
THIS CLASS IS FULL. To be put on a waiting list for the class, please contact us at (520) 955-5200 or Due to its popularity, we will offer it again soon, and if you are on the waiting list for the current class and don’t get in, we will contact you when the next class is scheduled.
Registration fee: $45 per person. 

Join herbalists Pam Hyde-Nakai and Donna Chesner on March 30 for a hands-on workshop using medicinal plants growing in Mission Garden. Donna and Pam will demonstrate an infusion, a fresh plant tincture, and a salve. Participants will leave with an understanding of simple, effective plant medicine making, as well as samples of the products created in the class demonstrations. Calendula and California poppy are blooming and thriving this spring, and we’ll get to know these wonderful, and easy to grow, plant allies. There will no doubt be some surprises popping up as well! Pam Hyde-Nakai and Donna Chesner are practicing herbalists and educators in the field of contemporary botanical medicine, with special interested on Southwest medicinal plants. Donna has helped Mission Garden develop the Moore Medicinal Herb Garden, named after ground-breaking herbalist Michael Moore. More information on this flyer.

Saturday April 6, 2019, 8:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Cholla Buds and Nopalitos con Mole: A Harvesting and Cooking Workshop at Mission Garden
THIS CLASS IS FULL. To be put on a waiting list for the class, please contact us at (520) 955-5200 or
This class is taught by two instructors–molera Amy Valdes Schwemm and ethnobotanist Martha Ames Burgess. It is a little feast of gastronomic delights in our new Mission Garden kitchen! Join us for a fun morning of on-site harvesting wild cholla cactus flower buds and young prickly pear pads for culinary ideas with moles (traditional Mexican sauces)!  Learn about traditional ways, natural history, important nutrition of each ingredient, while enjoying an amazing diversity of flavors. Find out how to adapt these ancient and historical culinary arts into your own nouvelle kitchen. Wear hat and sturdy clothes for harvesting and cooking. $50. Sixteen participants only. Registration and payment can be made by clicking here:

ChollaWorkshop50.00 USDCholla bud workshop
Your eTicket will be emailed after payment
Or register by contacting Mission Garden at (520) 955-5200 or, and send a check to Friends of Tucson’s Birthplace, PO Box 1228, Tucson, AZ 85702-1228.

April 23, 25 & 27, 2019
Agave Heritage Festival Events at Mission Garden
Tuesday April 23, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.Panel Discussion: Cultural Appropriation or Appreciation? Get different takes on the question of when it’s appropriate to use another culture’s traditions. Tickets. ($5)

Thursday April 25, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.Live Demonstration: Agave Roasting and Agave Fiber Crafts. See agave hearts put in the rock-lined pit oven, and learn about extracting and using fiber from agave leaves. Jesus Garcia, Paul and Suzanne Fish. Tickets. ($45 adults)

Saturday April 27 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.Agave Roasting Live Demonstration. We take the agaves out of the oven, learn about agave as a key food source, and understand better the Native American use of agaves. Paul and Suzanne Fish, Jesus Garcia, Carolyn Niethammer. Tickets. ($45 adults)

May 18, 2019, 8 – 11 a.m.
San Ysidro Festival
Join us to bring back to life the San Ysidro wheat harvest festival in Tucson. Join the procession, enjoy the music, and help us harvest, thresh, winnow, and mill white Sonora wheat, one of the first varities of wheat brought to the New World. Sample the feast dish for this traditional event, pozole de trigo. Bring your friends to this family-friendly event. Free!

August 21, 2019–TENTATIVE DATE
Tucson’s Birthday at Tucson’s Birthplace
Help us celebrate all that Tucson was and is at its birthplace.

September 21, 2019–TENTATIVE DATE
Pomegranate Festival
Help celebrate our harvest of white pomegranate. What’s a white pomegranate? Come see and taste!

October 19, 2019
Membrillo Fest
The quinces are ripe in October. Yum!

dena-pomegranates2Teosinte 2squash 2ripening-grapes 2Figs cropped 2 - 2017


or (520) 955-5200