The Sonoran Desert region is located in the southwest US / northwest Mexico borderlands, and spans five states: AZ, CA, and
Baja Sud, Baja Norte, and Sonora- and two countries: Mexico, USA. There are five distinct plant community subdivisions.
Biodiversity: The Sonoran Desert region includes Sky Islands, mountain ranges of up to 11,000' in a "sea" of low-desert valleys. Seasonal food plants grow at all elevations and include riparian areas. Sky Island foods include acorns, manzanita and juniper berries, wild grapes, and mushrooms.
The Arizona Uplands Subdivision
of the Sonoran Desert has not one but two rainy seasons, which help support the growth of food-bearing bean trees, cacti, and other delicious and nutritious native plant foods. Arizona Uplands includes Tucson and surrounding areas
Re-wilding urban spaces with food-bearing native plants is one of Desert Harvesters main goals, as a way of increasing food and water security in the community
A long history of traditional knowledge of indigenous food-harvesting and processing practices: a rain-filled bedrock mortar hole in a shaded site in the Tucson Mountains.
Our Future: As "sunbelt" development continues beyond the capacity of a dryland with a changing climate, awareness is growing that change is needed. Local communities are empowering themselves and their youth to grow and harvest seasonal native and cultivated foods to enhance community health, connection to place and traditional knowledge
Five Seasons: The intense heat of early (dry) summer sends many residents off to cooler locales.
Saguaro fruit harvest celebrates the coming monsoon with gratitude for the bounty of this place and prayers for rain