Nature’s Notebook

Connecting People with Nature to Benefit Our Changing Planet

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This year's Phenology Week theme is Kids in Bloom: Observing nature, big and small. We are highlighting all of the wonderful schools within our Tucson Phenology Trail who participate in phenology monitoring in some way! 

Image credit:
Brian F. Powell

Phenology Week 2015—October 16-24, 2015

Join us for the 3rd Annual Phenology Week Celebration in Tucson

Hummingbirds in nest

We are excited to showcase many of the local schools participating in phenology projects this year! Before the celebration week begins, take a workshop to learn how to use Nature's Notebook for monitoring plant and animal life cycles in our desert.

Learn more about the Tucson Phenology Trail and phenology monitoring with Nature's Notebook during the Keynote address at the Phenology Research and Observation of Southwest Ecosystems (PROSE) conference at the University of Arizona on October 16th at 1pm. Then, join us on October 24th, 9:00 am, at Tucson's Mission Garden to help us with the physical installation of a new monitoring site for the final event of this year's Phenology Week Celebration.

Listen to Beth Surdut talk about the joy of paying attention to nature in your backyard on Arizona Spotlight: 

The Art of Paying Attention: Regal horned lizard by Beth Surdut on Arizona Public Media

After the celebration, teachers are invited to participate in a weekend-long environmental education (EE) workshop at the Santa Rita Experimental Range, where we will demo phenology activities among other great EE activities. Email to register.

We're on Instagram @tucson_phenology_trail. Use the hashtag #PhenoWeek2015 on Instagram and Twitter, and don't forget to follow us on Facebook!

If you post something on instagram with the #PhenoWeek2015 hashtag, we will enter your photo in a prize drawing and post your photo on the Tucson Phenology Trail website! 


Scan the QR Code to get the Google Map of the Tucson Phenology Trail on your mobile device.


Schedule of Events

Link to the Tucson Phenology Trail Google Calendar of Events

Phenology Workshop at Brandi Fenton Memorial Park

Participate in a hands-on workshop where you will learn about the importance of phenology, the Nature's Notebook citizen science program, and how to submit observations to the National Phenology Database. Tucson Mission Garden on 10/24/15. $15. Scholarships available.Plan to join us for part two of this series at the Tucson Mission Garden on 10/24/15. $15. Scholarships available. Details below!

9/25/15 from 9:00 - noon

Register online - Required


Nature's Notebook Program at Oracle State Park

Learn about the Nature's Notebook citizen science program at OSP. Listen to Hilary Cox share what she has observed in nature over the last few years and take a walk on the trail. After the discussion, participate in a scavenger hunt along the trail.

10/4/15 at 1:00 pm

Nature's Notebook Workshop at Agua Caliente Park

Outdoor Family Day: Learn about phenology or the study of plant and animal life cycles. Join in on a habitat scavenger hunt and record your observations of plants and animals. Families with children ages 5-12. $5. 

10/10/15 at 9 am Register online - Required

PROSE Conference and Phenology Week Kick-off!

The 8th Annual Phenology Research and Observation of Southwest Ecosystems (PROSE) Conference kicks off this year's Phenology Week Celebration. Join us for the day or hear our Keynote Speaker, Dr. Jake Weltzin, Executive Director of the USA-NPN, discuss current research on phenology in our local ecosystem.

10/16/15 PROSE Conference from 8:00 - 5:00. Keynote at 1pm. Registration required for lunch 

Coffee Walk and Phenology Talk on the UofA Campus

What is Phenology? Phenology is the study of seasons, and the collection of data on the changes we see in our native plants. Phenology generates much of its success through citizen scientists, i.e. YOU! It is really an incredible opportunity to be at the forefront of a science that can tell us so much about our native world and how we can relate our findings to climate change. If you would like a chance to glimpse into the world of Phenology, please join us on campus at Krutch Garden for our "coffee walk." Bring your own mug, and we will provide some local coffee, or bring your favorite coffee/tea! We will take a small walk in the garden and learn about local plants and how to gather data. See you there! Be sure to thank our Coffee Sponsor, EXO Coffee for the treat! We will have coupons available. 

10/19/15 at 9:00 am. Meet by the CATS statue on the northeast corner of the Krutch Garden.

The Art of Paying Attention Workshop 

Download the brochure

Here’s a great opportunity to share your nature experiences! Observing nature starts with curiosity about what's around you. This workshop will explore and hone your observation skills through exercises and storytelling. Come share your backyard critter and habitat stories in the Tucson Botanical Gardens—off the cuff is just fine! Do bring a notebook.Award-winning artist and writer Beth Surdut, creator of Listening to Raven and The Art of Paying Attention NPR radio series, will facilitate the telling of your wildlife tales.

10/20/15 at 3:00 pm Register online - Required

Phenology observation at Sweetwater Wetlands

Middle school youth particiate in field day events throughout the wetlands. The trail is labeled and always open to the public. For more information on school programming at Sweetwater, visit Arizona Project WET's website.

10/21/15 and 10/22/15

Phenology at the Borton Environmental Learning Lab

Students collect regular observations in their Outdoor Learning Lab. Parents - there is an event for you on the morning of the 23rd!

10/21/15, 10/22/15, 10/23/15

Mansfield Middle School Phenology Program Kickoff

Mansfield Middle School is the newest school to join our Tucson Phenology Trail Program!


Tucson Botanical Garden Lego Fun

Join us for a special Phenology Lego Event at the Botanical Garden, as a way to celebrate Phenology Week and the Nature Connects, Art with LEGO Bricks

10/23/15 at 10:00 am

Phenology Walk Installation at Tucson's Mission Garden

The capstone event! Learn how to establish a Nature's Notebook phenology observation site at your home, school, or other outdoor setting. We will work outside in the garden and demonstrate how to set up a physical site and how to collect observations on the plants and animals you've chosen. Also learn about how phenology has informed the many cultures living in Tucson over the last 4000 years.

10/24/15 at 9:00 am

Register online -Required