Moorten Botanical Garden and Cactarium

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The entrance to the Moorten Botanical Garden.

The Moorten Botanical Garden and Cactarium is a 1-acre (4,000 m²) family-owned botanical garden specializing in cacti and other desert plants, located at 1701 South Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs, Riverside County, California, United States. It is in the Colorado Desert ecosystem.


The Moorten Gardens were established in 1939 by Patricia and Chester "Cactus Slim" Moorten,[1] Chester being one of the original Keystone Cops. The Moorten residence was originally built in Mediterranean style by photographer Stephen H. Willard (1894–1966).[2] The Moortens collected many of their own specimen plants from Baja California, mainland Mexico, and as far south as Guatemala. To recognize their contributions to the community, the Moortens were awarded "Golden Palm Stars" on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars.[3]

The Moorten residence, known as "The Cactus Castle", at the garden


Ecoregion habitats[edit]

The garden includes 3,000 examples of desert cacti and other desert plants, grouped by geographic regions:

Garden collections[edit]

Outdoor collections include: Agaves, Bombax, crested Cereus, Cardoon and Boojum trees, "arborescent candelabra Euphorbia" , a two-story Pachypodium, thorned Caesalpinia and Bursera, and over a dozen Aloes of southern Africa and Madagascar.

"Cactarium" greenhouse collections include: cacti and succulents, with caudiciform species exhibiting thickened root crowns, many species of Asclepiads, Aztecia, Gymnocalycium, Alstromeria, Euphorbia, and Ferocactus, plus two fine examples of Welwitschia mirabilis from Namibian deserts.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mitchell, Gordon "Whitey" (2006). Star Walk: A Guide to the Palm Springs Walk of Stars. Palm Springs, California: Hall/Sloane. p. 99. ISBN 978-0-9638683-4-3.
  2. ^ Giles, Christine (2007). "23: The Ansel Adams of the Desert: Stephen H. Willard". In Peter Wild. The Grumbling Gods: a Palm Springs Reader. Salt Lake City, UT: University of Utah Press. ISBN 978-0-87480-899-5. OCLC 122974473, 608203796, 608020250 (print and on-line)
  3. ^ Palm Springs Walk of Stars: By Date Dedicated Archived 2012-12-08 at the Wayback Machine.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°48′01″N 116°32′46″W / 33.8003°N 116.5460°W / 33.8003; -116.5460