Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve
The Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve is a 35-acre nature preserve located on the I-25 frontage road south of Santa Fe. The preserve is adjacent to El Rancho de las Golondrinas in La Cienega. This rare natural cienega, or “marsh” in Spanish, hosts a bountiful diversity of plants and wildlife.
The Preserve contains three distinct plant communities or zones. They are: riparian/wetland, transitional, and dry uplands.
The Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve is named for Leonora Scott Muse Curtin who first came to New Mexico from New York in 1889. She was an avid naturalist, who spoke fluent Spanish, and became interested in plants with medicinal and nutritional values used by Native Americans and early Spanish settlers. She quickly became fascinated with the healing skills of the curanderas, who used naturally growing herbs to treat the sick and injured. Healing Herbs of the Upper Rio Grande compiles Curtin’s research from time spent in the mountain villages of Northern New Mexico.
Hours of Operation
During visiting season (May -October) the Preserve is open on Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to noon and Sunday afternoons from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Guided nature walks are offered every Saturday at 10 a.m. No reservations necessary in advance.
Entry to the preserve is free. Donation suggested.
Group Rates and Special Access
To receive the group admission price or special access during off hours, please make a reservation at least one week in advance.
Fill out a group visit request online by clicking here.
You can also call or email the SFBG office at 505-471-9103 or firstname.lastname@example.org. (We consider a group as 20 or more people. The group rate is $50. If you do not have 20 or more, the fee per person is $5.)
- Preserve is also open Wednesdays in season for group access – times are variable. Required scheduling in advance.
No pets please. Service animals are permitted.
27283 I-25 West Frontage Road (not a mailing address)
La Cienega, NM
The Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve (LCWP) is fully staffed by trained volunteer docents. Docents are adults of all ages, walks of life and educational backgrounds. There are currently 70 trained docents volunteering twice per month or more at the Preserve.
Each year, we offer a Docent Training Program to prepare volunteers to lead nature walks for the public or school groups. The docents’ responsibility is to help visitors to the Preserve and people in the community better understand and appreciate Santa Fe Botanical Garden and our very unique wetland Preserve.
Read more about the Preserve…
Just south of Santa Fe, an unusual natural preserve hides behind a gate off the I-25 frontage road near La Cienega. The preserve offers a rare wetland environment…