A new work of art, showcasing the wonders of the Sonoran Desert and made up of more than 1,300 bottle caps, is on display at the Tucson Botanical Gardens, 2150 N. Alvernon Way.

The project was conceived almost a year ago, according to Laura Uccetta, youth education coordinator at the Gardens.

Uccetta said the idea was to create a mural to go along with the Gardens’ “Washed Ashore” exhibit, a touring exhibit of larger-than-life sea creature sculptures made up entirely of marine debris.

The Gardens put out a big rain barrel where guests that came through could donate all of their bottle caps. Organizers then put out a big canvas with a mural by local artist Sydney Butler on it where the caps were applied.

The end result was a permanent piece of art that will be up next to the Washed Ashore exhibit through the end of June, then on display permanently in the Children’s Discovery Garden.

People who submitted their bottle caps said just the act of collecting the caps allowed them to see how much plastic they go through, Uccetta said.

“A lot of people actually said that they were going to change some of their habits,” she added.