Desert Plants is a unique botanical journal published by The University of Arizona for Boyce Thompson Southwestern Arboretum. This journal is devoted to encouraging the appreciation of indigenous and adapted arid land plants. Desert Plants publishes a variety of manuscripts intended for amateur and professional desert plant enthusiasts. A few of the diverse topics covered include desert horticulture, landscape architecture, desert ecology, and history. First published in 1979, Desert Plants is currently published biannually with issues in June and December.

Digital access to this material is made possible by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Boyce Thompson Southwestern Arboretum, and the University Libraries at the University of Arizona.


Contact Desert Plants editorial staff at desertplants@cals.arizona.edu.

Recent Submissions

  • Desert Plants, Volume 33, Number 2 (January 2018)

    Verrier, James T.; University of Arizona Herbarium (University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 2018-01)
    The Santa Catalina Mountains are located in Pima and Pinal counties in southeastern Arizona. The study area is defined as approximately 259,000 acres (104,813 hectares) or 405 mi2 (1,048 km2), spanning an elevational gradient of 6,457 ft (1,968 m). Located on the northwestern edge of the Madrean-influenced sky island complex of southeastern Arizona and northern Sonora, highly diverse plant communities range from Sonoran Desert to subalpine forest. A total of 380 days of field work were conducted between 2007–2017, including extensive exploration of the remote east side of the mountains. The vascular flora includes 1,360 taxa in 127 families and is currently the largest of any range in southern Arizona. Non-native plants are represented by 167 taxa and comprise 12.3% of the total flora. The three largest plant families are Asteraceae, Poaceae and Fabaceae, with 213, 187 and 107 taxa respectively. Euphor-bia, Muhlenbergia and Dalea are the largest genera with 24, 22 and 16 species. A total of 375 taxa are found on lime-stone or dolomitic substrates. There are 69 historically collected taxa that have not been seen or collected in 55 years, which are excluded from this checklist. New additions to the vascular flora are vouchered at the University of Arizona Herbarium. A checklist of 169 non-vascular plants from 36 families, based on over 1,150 collections from 18 national herbaria, is included. The floristic diversity of this sky island represents nearly a third of the entire state flora, while occupying less than half a percent of the state’s area. Geographic location, elevational gradient, geological diversity, and a high percentage of species found at the edge of their ranges contribute to the rich diversity of this unique mountain range.Monsoon storms cover the west side of the range.