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Saguaro National Park

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

The Spirit of Arizona Blog Series:                                     Saguaro National Park 

They stand majestically and silently at attention, silhouetted in the setting sun like some alien form of life with extended arms sprouting every which way.  Their height is remarkable when one considers they grow at the rate of about an inch a year.  Imagine the stories they would tell, if only they could, of what they have seen over their 150 average year life span.  

Taking all of this into account, the Saguaro National Park is a magical place where in addition to the Giant Saguaro, are about 1,162 other species of plants ranging from desert vegetation such as cacti, ocotillo, and creosote in the lower elevations all the way to Ponderosa Pine, Oak and Douglas-fir trees in the upper elevations of the Rincon Mountains.  The Rincon Mountain District of the Saguaro National park includes terrain from under 2,500 feet elevation to 8,666 feet elevation.

Saguaro National Park is composed of two distinct districts:  the Rincon Mountain District and the Tucson Mountain District.  The Tucson Mountain District lies on the west side Tucson, Arizona, while the Rincon Mountain District lies on the east side of Tucson.  Both districts were formed to protect and exhibit forests of their namesake:  The Saguaro Cactus.

The Saguaro Cactus only grows naturally in the Sonoran Desert.  There are an estimated 1.6 million individual plants growing within the Saguaro National Park.  If you are as curious as I am about the universal symbol of the American West, then you'll want to be sure to check out the Saguaro Cactus Question and Answer Guide.

While the majestic Saguaro Cactus may be the main attraction, the park has much more to offer within its two districts including 165 miles of hiking trails.  So whether you prefer a short interpretive nature trail, a day-long wilderness trek or something in-between there is something for everyone.  

It seems rather fitting that the iconic Saguaro would be the one to give birth to Saguaro National Parkour Arizona State flower, the Saguaro blossom.  In late April through early June, the tops of the saguaro's trunk sprout a profusion of large creamy-white flowers with yellow centers.    Clustered near the ends of the branches, the blossoms open during cooler desert nights and close by the following afternoon.  To produce fruit, they must be pollinated within this time frame. 

Saguaro FruitPollination is carried out by nectar feeding bats, birds and insects.  It is estimated that a saguaro can produce nearly 40 million deeds during it lifetime.  However very few survive to adulthood due to drought, prolonged freezing or animals eating them.  In early Summer, the Tohono O'odham people come to Saguaro National Park to harvest the saguaro fruit

Located on the outskirts of Tucson, and just a short drive from Green Valley, Arizona, the enormous cactus are a must see for the area.  Whether you view the breathtaking scenery from the comfort of your car or on foot, you won't be disappointed.

         JUDI MONDAY, CRS         

520-241-7780

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Canoa Ranch Real Estate

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

At the Southern most tip of the famous retirement community of Green Valley Arizona, you will find Canoa Ranch real estate.  Its ideal location includes access to big-city entertainment from within a Southwestern paradise that offers hiking, biking, bird watching and much more.  Here an active lifestyle is not just an advertising buzz word but rather a way of life for those who have chosen to retire in this picturesque community.

The community is built around the Canoa Ranch Golf Club, which was named as one of Golf Digest's "New Favorites" in Arizona.   This challenging course is a great example of how the Southwestern desert can be transformed into a golfer's paradise without destroying the beauty of the native land.   Both the course and community boast dramatic elevation changes, and spectacular views of Elephant Head and the Santa Rita Mountain range. 

Real estate choices in this resort living community offers something for everyone.  For those of you looking for a carefree residence then the Canoa Ranch Resort Condominiums may be just the ticket.  Own your own condominium hotel suite, with all the amenities of a luxury resort, the benefits of a maintenance free lifestyle and the advantages of home ownership.

The Villas by Fairfiled Homes are 1652 square feet luxury townhomes that have been built to take full advantage of some of the best views in Canoa Ranch.  Fairfield's "Flex-Plan" allows a variety of floor plan changes so you can customize your home to fit your lifestyle.  Need more space?  Then be sure to check out the Estates by Fairfield Homes.  Select your mountain and valley views from the only acre-sized lots available in Canoa Ranch.  Four floor plans are available, from 1725 to 2568 square feet. 

 

If a single family home is more to your liking, then you will have plenty to choose from in the age restricted and gated neighborhoods of Canoa Ranch and Canoa Northwest.  With a redesigned line-up of models, you can decide to build a new Meritage home or score a great deal on a resale with a range of floor plans from about 1,250 square feet to more than 2,700.   Here are a few of the featured homes currently for sale in the Canoa Ranch area:

If you are looking to make Canoa Ranch home, give me a call at 520-241-7780 and let me show you all of the real estate options available in this outstanding resort community.  From a new build, to a spec home, to a great deal on a resale, I can help you find the one best suited to your lifestyle at a price that will make you smile. 

Bisbee, Arizona

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

The Spirit of Arizona Blog Series:                                     Bisbee, Arizona

Discover a treasured place where time seems to have stopped.  Nestled in the mile-high Mule Mountains of Southern Arizona, Bisbee has an old world charm that you will be hard pressed to find in many places throughout the United States.  Here you can experience history seemingly frozen in time. 

The wonderful collection of well-preserved turn of the century Victorian structures are full of old West history and copper mining lore.  Old miners' boarding houses have been lovingly refurbished into charming small bed and breakfast establishments...each one unqiue and no two alike.  Former saloons are now quaint shops, antique stores, art galleries, cafes and restaurants pulsating with the history of a time gone by. 


This picturesque county seat of historic Cochise County was founded in 1880 and named after Judge Dewitt Bisbee.  Bisbee is an Old West mining camp that produced nearly three mllion ounces of gold and more than eight billion pounds of copper, making it one of the richest mineral sites in the world.  In the "day",  it boast a population of 20,000 people and had the distinction of being the most cultured city in the Southwest.  However, the rough edges of the mining camps could be found in notorious Brewery Gulch, with its saloons and bordellos. 

In 1908 a fire ravaged most of Bisbee's commercial district along Main Street, leaving nothing but a pile of ashes.Reconstruction began immediately and by 1910 most of the district had been rebuilt and remains completely intact today. As mining operations on a large scale became unprofitable in 1975, the population began to shrink.

Undaunted by its change in fortune this spunky town has evolved into an attractive artist colony and retirement community with monthly special events and tourism.  Travelers from all over the world come to Bisbee to savor its unique charm...an uncommon blend of creativity, friendly people, historic style, and adventure all wrapped up in the splendor of the Old West. 

         JUDI MONDAY, CRS         

520-241-7780

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Green Valley, AZ September 2010 Real Estate Statistics

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

Due to a healthy rainfall in the month of September, not to mention a very active Monsoon season, everywhere you look you can see the "green" in Green Valley.   I am enjoying being surround by a very lush desert...a rather unusual sight in the great Southwest.  Green Valley Goes Green After Active Monsoon Season

About the only thing not growing in Green Valley at the moment are home sales which dipped slightly to 40 in September as compared to 44 in the month of August.  The average selling price remained relatively steady at $167,543 with the previous month's $167,884, but continues to lag behind the average selling price of $181,028 for the same time period last year. 

The number of active listings were 766, and the average listing price in September was $240,356 as compared to $245,863 in August. 

The breakdown for the active residential listings as of September 30, 2010 were as follows:

GREEN VALLEY

(includes Quail Creek & surrounding subdivisions)

581

SAHUARITA

(includes subdivisions N of Duval Mine Road & Duval Mine Rd.

  89

AREAS S & SE & SW OF GREEN VALLEY

(includes Elephant Head, Amado, Aravaca, Montana Vista & Lakewood)

  17

AREAS N & NE & NW OF SAHUARITA

(includes Vail, Curley, Horn Ranch, Ocotillo Ranch, etc)

    4

TUBAC & TUMACACORI

  63
TUCSON     2
RIO RICO   17

OTHER

(includes Nogales, etc)

    3
   

There were 40 homes sold in September 2010, down slightly from 44 sold in August.  The breakdown by area for those sales were as follows:

GREEN VALLEY                                                33
SAHUARITA

  4

TUBAC
  1
VAIL, NOGALES, RIO RICO, ARIVACA/AMADO   2

Following is the 2009 to 2010 year-to-date comparison for the time period of January 1 through September 30, 2010:

  2009 2010
Houses Sold 576 622
Days On Market 164 172
Average Selling Price $180,650 $167,543
Median Price $160,000 $150,000

         JUDI MONDAY, CRS         

520-241-7780

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The 34th Miner

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

This morning I could barely tear myself away from the TV long enough to hold the Open Houses I had scheduled.   Last night I crawled into bed hours later than I normally would as images of the rescues splashed across the screen and more importantly, were seared into my heart and soul.

The 34th MinerThey are a testament to the indomitable human spirit and a reminder that all things are possible when we believe.  Each time the aptly named Phoenix (spelled on the rescue capsule as fenix) rises to the earth's surface is a miracle beyond comprehension as men who had spent 69 days buried alive set foot above ground to be greeted by the loved ones they must have wondered if they would ever see again let alone touch and hold in their arms. 

The men who step from the capsule are not the same people who entered that mine 69 days ago for what they thought would be a normal workday.   We watched transfixed as the man who filled the role of spiritual leader for this remarkable group hugged his wife and then kneeled on the ground in silent prayer.  Transformed to the very essence of his being…he did not let the experience defeat him but rather shape him.   Amazingly, the day he entered that mine more than 2 months ago was going to be his last as he was starting a well earned retirement the next day.

Many of the rescued miners have referenced the 34th miner who was with them throughout this unimaginable ordeal.  We’ve heard how this experience has changed them in ways we cannot not see or touch…at a deep spiritual level.    Like the Phoenix rising from the ashes they have been transformed in ways we too should aspire to experience.  

There is so much to be gleaned from this daring rescue mission, including

  • Proof of the fact there is a power higher than ourselves who is with us even in our darkest hour…if we are willing to embrace that 34th Miner then we can overcome whatever obstacles lie before us;
  • Never underestimate the unbeatable power of a world coming together for a common cause;
  • BELIEVE…and all things are possible

I am convinced this unfolding event will serve us well as we continue to find our way through the worst economic times since the depression.   Like the Miners who are rising from the darkness into the light so shall our great country.   The next time you are feeling down or defeated by what is taking place around us, remember the brave 33 men who have been tested as few of us ever will be and how they managed to transcend it in a powerful and deeply meaningful way.

Horseback Riding In & Around Green Valley AZ

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

The Spirit of Arizona Blog Series:                                     Discover The Great Southwest On Horseback

Horseback riding is as much a part of the American West as sunsets and saguaros. In fact, there is nothing finer than a horseback ride at sunset in the Sonoaran Desert and Saguaro National Park. 

In the Green Valley/Tucson area and throughout Southern Arizona you can saddle up at a guest ranch, resort, or public stable.  Horseback riding opportunities abound in the immediate area. 

Horsemanship lessons and wrangler-guided trips (with trail-side breakfast or picnic lunch) are available for both individuals and groups of all skill levels. For a special treat, look into specialty rides, such as sunrise, sunset, and moonlight rides to make your time on the desert trails especially memorable.  


Whether you choose a half-day jaunt, a longer trail ride, a group or solo journey, riding horseback is the real Western way to explore the high desert landscape.

Kartchner Caverns State Park

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

The Spirit of Arizona Blog Series:                                     Kartchner Caverns State Park

Kartchner Caverns State ParkDeep within the bowels of the earth in the Whetstone Mountains is a magical place 200,000 years in the making--a pristine limestone cave.  Discovered in November 1974 by two young cavers, Gary Tenen and Randy Tufts, when they found a narrow crack at the bottom of a sinkhole leading into the hillside. The warm moist air that flowed from the crack signaled the existence of a cave.

Curious, they crawled deeper and after several hours found the "live" limestone cave.  This underground wonder is home to a wide variety of unique minerals and formations, including:

  • one of the world's longest soda straw stalactites: 21 feet 3 inches (Throne Room)
  • the tallest and most massive column in Arizona, Kubla Khan: 58 feet tall (Throne Room)
  • the world's most extensive formation of brushite moonmilk (Big Room)
  • the first reported occurrence of “turnip” shields (Big Room)
  • the first cave occurrence of “birdsnest” needle quartz formations
  • many other unusual formations such as shields, totems, helictites, and rimstone dams.

For an unforgettable adventure be sure to put the Kartchner Caverns State Park on your "must see" list.  During a memorable 1 1/2 hour tour, your guide will unveil the mysteries of this fascinating underground landscape.  The park's Discovery Center features museum exhibits, a large gift shop, regional displays, theater, and educational information about the caverns and the surrounding landscape. There are also campgrounds, hiking trails, lockers, shaded picnic areas, a deli, an amphitheater, and a hummingbird garden.

JUDI MONDAY, CRS         

520-241-7780

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Before You Say YES To A House

by Judi Monday, Your Green Valley AZ Expert

Two of the buyers that I am currently working with are clients of mine who each bought a house though me less than a year ago.  This is the first time in my relatively short real estate career I have had anyone come back and say they bought the wrong house...and it has happened twice in the last month. It has made me wonder how such a costly mistake could be made and what advice I should give to buyers to help prevent it from happening again. 

First and foremost I would tell anyone thinking about purchasing a home to sit down and create a list of must haves in their new home.  Secondly,  prioritize that list in two ways--things that are cosmetic and therefore can be changed and those items that cannot be changed or "fixed'. 

For instance, you "must" have granite counter tops.  Of course, the best case scenario would be to find that perfect home with granite counters.  But, let's say you find a home that fits all the criteria on your list except for the granite counters.  Given that this is something that CAN be fixed, and, if there isn't another home that fits so perfectly with what want in a home, then the lack of granite counters shouldn't be a deal breaker.

However, let's say a quiet setting is high on your list because you are sensitive to noise.  You find find a home that has granite counters and everything else on your list EXCEPT it is close to a busy highway.  Then this is a house that no matter how perfect it may be otherwise, is one that you should most likely walk away from or risk living each day regretting your decision to buy it.  Perhaps the noise is at a level that can be masked to some degree with a water feature -- then you need to consider if the noise will grow louder over time as the community continues to grow.  Is this a risk you are willing to take?

Lastly I would advise a buyer to make several visits to the home at different times of the day and to use all of their senses each time to evaluate whether this is really the right home.  How do you feel when you are in the home; what noises do you hear; what do you see as you walk around the inside and outside of the home; and what do you smell inside and outside the home? 

In summary, as you begin your home buying adventure, come armed with a list of everything you MUST have in your new home.  Understand which items on the list are cosmetic in nature and therefore could be changed, if necessary, as opposed to those that cannot not be changed or "fixed".  By NOT compromising on the items that can't be changed, chances are you will live happily ever after in the home of your dreams. 

   JUDI MONDAY, CRS         

520-241-7780

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 Green Valley Arizona Real EstateCanoa Ranch Green Valley ArizonaGreen Valley Arizona Golf InformationJudi Monday's BlogJudi Monday's YouTube Channel Judi Monday's Raving Fans

Certified Residential Specialist

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Judi Monday
RE/MAX Valley Properties In Green Valley, AZ
210 West Continental Road
Green Valley AZ 85622
Direct: (520) 241-7780
Fax: (520) 648-2221