The concept of a contemporary garden, contemporary being anything since the dawn of humans, brings to mind people using naturally occurring plants and arranging them in a pleasing design. Everything from a home window box garden to the extravagance of the gardens of Versailles in France.
As it turns out, nature has been around a lot longer than us and has set the high bar for grandeur, intricacies, and tenacity.
Dune | Desert Garden
Who would have thought that a garden could exist in the desert?
Desert conjures up one image: the complete lack of water. Something that most plants don’t find appealing. In reality, even the most arid places have water, it’s just well hidden. But plants will figure out a way to either find water underground or collect it during the mornings and evenings when it condenses out of our atmosphere as dew.
In southern Utah and northern Arizona there are a number of amazing national parks where we discovered just how tenacious nature’s gardens can be.
During our road trip from Michigan to Utah, we spent two weeks hiking through Mukuntuweap National Monument (later renamed to Zion National Park) and Bryce Canyon.
In this three-part series, we explore naturally occurring gardens as we move deeper into the deserts of Utah.
Photos | Mukuntuweap National Monument
Upper and Lower Emerald Pool and Falls
Photography | Tom Libertiny
With their tremendous ability to adapt to changing conditions, nature’s own gardens flourish in some of the most unimaginable places. Which is something that only adds to their beauty.
We’ll continue our tour with Observation Point in the Mukuntuweap National Monument in our next article.