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Our own little oasis. See cacti, euphorbia, agave, and more!


The driest place on earth!

  1. Not all deserts are hot! Antarctica, one of the coldest places on earth, is a desert!
  2. Deserts receive less than 10 inches of rain each year. Here in Buffalo, we receive around 40 inches of rain each year.
  3. Over millions of years, desert plants have developed special adaptations that help them survive in areas with little access to water.
  4. Many desert plants are succulents. Succulents store water in their roots, stems, or leaves.


Cacti have adapted to live in some of the harshest deserts on earth!

  1. All cacti are succulents, meaning that they store water inside their steams. However, not all succulents are a type of cactus!
  2. Cacti are often covered with sharp thorns or spines. Believe it or not, cacti spines are a type of modified leaf!
  3. Spines can be found in all different shapes and textures. Some look like fine hairs, while others look like thick thorns.
  4. Spines help defend the plant from animals that might try to eat them, as well as provide shade from the hot sun.

Prickly pear


Barrel cactus



Native to the Americas, agave are succulent plants that have adapted to live in harsh, hot deserts. We have over 10 different species of agave in our Desert.

  1. Agave plants produce beautiful, long leaves in different colors and patterns. Most species grow sharp spines along the tips and edges of the leaves.
  2. Agave plants are not true cacti, they are actually members of the asparagus family.
  3. When they bloom, they produce one large flower stalk at the center of the plant. These stalks can grow as high as 30 feet.

Butterfly agave

Agave potatorum

Hedgehog agave

Agave stricta

Weber's agave

Agave weberi

Century plant

Agave americana

Other plants in this greenhouse

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