Rochelle Greayer

Welcome to the

Pith   Vigor

blog

+

The Shop

PSSST...
Back Issues of P+V Newspaper Are Available in the FREE Resource Library

the Book

dig into

buy

CONNECT:

Hey There! I’m Rochelle Greayer. I’m a garden designer on TV and IRL. I’m also an author and entrepreneur who thinks she can save the world by teaching everyone a little something about landscape design.

rochelle

meet

TELL ME MORE

TELL ME MORE

5/16/2011

Garden Destinations: Tovrea Castle & Carraro Cactus Garden

The Tovrea Castle

When Italian immigrant Allessio Carraro and his Russian landscape gardener “Mokta” Moktachev started building the Tovrea Castle and the surrounding cactus gardens in the 1920’s, they had a exclusive resort in mind.  But shortly after completing the project, the neighbors installed a feedlot (there might be no better way to kill the ambiance of a beautiful resort than to have a feedlot next door).  So Carraro sold his Italian wedding cake castle and moved on.

The meat packing plant owner (Edward Tovrea) bought the property and his widow Della Tovrea lived there until she died in the late 1960’s. In decline until 1993 when the City of Phoenix bought the property and designated it a Phoenix Point of Pride and listed it on the National Register of Historic Places, it is now (slowly but surely) getting the attention and restoration that will hopefully lead to its opening.

Plans for a public re-opening were scheduled for 2010 but with budget cuts, work has slowed and the project is indefinitely delayed.

Over 43 acres have been set aside for preservation, and in 2006 work began on restoring the gardens. Diseased and dead plants were removed, 352 saguaro cacti were planted, and over 2,000 other cacti relocated. Original pictures of Moktachev’s landscape shows a densely planted and vibrant collection of desert flora.  Currently the park includes more than 5,000 individual cacti and over 100 different varieties.

This fantastic restoration project is looking for funding and volunteers.   Being involved in my own local restoration project, I can tell you it is exciting to become part of the history of a place.  Maybe you are interested?

images from Micheal Greene’s Wild Momentsdelange.org, ohfirefox.com,  and The Cultural Landscape Foundation.

Spread the love
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Enjoy this Post?

access my resource library!

Join over 10,000 others and get access to my free library of e-books, worksheets, and resources for garden makers. Plus you also can download all the digital back issues of the PITH+VIGOR Newspaper. 

  1. Private says:

    wow. so crowded. On the one hand it’s lush and visually rich, but it reminds me of a though (Edward Abbey maybe) about how the desert celebrates plants as proud individuals, symbols of self reliance, or at least with their alliances hidden. It makes me wonder if this density is sustainable. Maybe it’s just my eyes are more used to Nevada which is emptier than Phoenix.

    I wonder if they get dandelions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join the PitH+VIGOR Newsletter Community