Additions to the florilegium of the joseph wood krutch garden

In 2015, the University of Arizona Campus Arboretum established the Florilegium of the Joseph Wood Krutch Garden to document the scientific and aesthetic value of the Garden’s plant collection. For the past few years, Tanya Quist, Director of the Campus Arboretum, and Margaret Pope, steering committee chair of the Sonoran Desert Florilegium Program, have been working to raise funds for the purchase of artworks for the Krutch Garden Florilegium while also recruiting skilled artists who can produce high quality scientific botanical illustrations. Artworks juried into the Florilegium will be purchased from the artists and held in Special Collections at the U of A Library. Artists will retain the copyright to their works. Special Collections will periodically exhibit the artwork at various venues on campus, and the collection will be available for loan for off-campus exhibits. A more detailed description of the project can be found here.

At present, the Campus Arboretum will be commissioning some 60 botanical illustrations of plants in the University’s Krutch Garden. Thanks to the generosity of Keith and Brenda Taylor, the fundraising goal for the commissions has nearly been met.

The first painting accepted into the Florilegium was Chris Bondante’s Opuntia basilaris, in 2016. In 2021, nine additional works by four artists have been accepted:
Joyce Peters Agave lophantha, Calliandra eriophylla, Dicliptera resupinata, Senna covesii
Chris Bondante Larrea tridentata
Pauline Savage Coryphantha vivipara
Karen Gengle Justicia californica, Paryella filifolia, Echinocereus engelmanii

These works can be viewed on the Campus Arboretum website. The same webpage contains a link to a listing of all plant species to be included in the Florilegium. Also on the page is a link to photos and a description of the process of creating these illustrations.

Other useful information about the project and the Garden can be found in the July 2016 Desert Breeze, which provides a biographical sketch of Joseph Wood Krutch by Margaret Pope. Also in that issue are links to two very interesting articles: “A Florilegium of the Historic Joseph Wood Krutch Garden at the University of Arizona” by Tanya Quist and Linnea Gentry, and “Student of an Arid Land: Joseph Wood Krutch and the Sonoran Desert” by Linnea Gentry. All three articles have photos of the Krutch Garden and of Joseph Wood Krutch. —Cindy Hartwell

This article appeared in the July 2021 issue of the Desert Breeze, the monthly newsletter of the Tucson Cactus and Succulent Society.