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In the Arid Southwest, Only a Short Drive North From the Mexican Border, Tucson gardeners zealously anticipate garden tours, delighting in the opportunity such tours bring to peer inside garden walls. Visitors in this Arizona city are in for a special treat, however, when a tour features the garden of Ron MacBain and Gus Carrasco. In a climate where most landscapes are comprised of mesquite, bottlebrush, drought-tolerant wildflowers and succulents, Ron and Gus' garden is seemingly from another world. Refreshed by riotous colors and verdant foliage, a garden visitor might easily feel transported miles away to a gentler, more temperate crime.
"It's just a little English cottage garden," Ron says modestly as he leads guests into the garden. And if an English cottage garden grown in one of the country's most arid states wasn't unique -- or challenging -- enough, these determined gardeners have chosen to grow their garden almost entirely in containers.
It takes a lot of containers and a lot of plants to achieve the lush and rambling look Ron and Gus want. More than 180 containers are filled by a rotating flower show during a four-month period. And the plant selection knows no bounds: the season starts with early daffodils and continues as later varieties of daffodils bloom …