If this midtown garden extraordinaire weren't a perennial reader's pick, it would certainly be this staff member's pick for Best Public Garden. Tucson Botanical Gardens is a lovely little getaway, where visitors can take a class, have a nice little lunch, get all artsy-crafty, shop or just stroll among any or all of the 16 gardens found on the grounds. Classes run the breadth from basic horticulture to plant-specific lessons, flower arranging, conservation issues and even culinary classes. There is usually a nominal fee for the classes, although the curriculum offers plenty of freebies as well. Seasonal sales in the gardens and a charming gift shop feature unique items for home and garden. Lunch is available thanks to the folks from Café 54. If you've never been, go. If you have, go back.
2. Tohono Chul Park, 7366 N. Paseo Del Norte, 742-6455, www.tohonochulpark.org
3. Reid Park Rose Garden, Country Club Road, just north of 22nd Street, www.tucsonaz.gov/parksandrec/specialplaces.php