Sasha Timpson

Garden Operations Manager

Sasha grew up along the marshy coastlands of Maine, but has been enthralled by the Sonoran desert ever since they first moved to Arizona in 2011. Sasha enjoys spending time outside and getting their hands dirty, as well as facilitating connections between people and plants. They are committed to supporting the needs of their community and sharing the joy of gardening with others.

Melissa Mundt

Community Engagement Manager

Melissa Mundt has over 10 years experience with desert gardening, teaching, composting and seed saving. She worked for many years with the Farm and Garden Program of the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona and recently started a landscape company, Garden PlaySpace, that focuses on kid-friendly gardens and nature play areas. She is a certified Permaculture Designer, certified Smartscape Sustainable Landscape Professional and has training in rainwater harvesting, seed saving, organic food production, backyard chickens and environmental education. She loves home gardening with her 2 young kids, hiking, watercolor painting and power tools.

Jessica Paul

Garden Educator

Jessica has been with the Community Gardens for over 5 years. She has been the garden technician, the gardens manager, administrator, and is now excited to devote more time as the garden educator for our Kids in Gardens program. She has been teaching kids in our garden communities for many years, and is looking forward to devoting more attention to making these gardens learning labs for students of all ages. She is currently an intern for the Master Naturalist Program, and is excited to help connect our larger Sonoran Desert Region with our gardening community and the students that she works with.

Cara Ryan


Cara moved to Tucson from Illinois in 1980. Cara and her husband, Sean, enjoy gardening at their home and spending time with our two granddaughters. She is also active in animal rescue and currently foster dogs for several local rescues.