Botanical Gardens: An Urban Refuge

Looking for something fun to do with friends for Memorial Day, we finally decided to visit the Tilden Park Botanical Garden in Berkeley, California.

Courtesy of the Friends of the Regional Park

A botanic garden is a terrific place to go for an easy refuge from nearby urban spaces, and a chance to visualize the diversity and importance of plants in a natural environment.

Spanning ten acres, the Tilden Park Botanical Garden was designed in the 1940’s as a preservation area, and showcase of California plants including rare and endangered grasses, shrubs, trees, and flowers. The area features a year-round creek that runs through the gently sloping site into a cool rainforest preserve with several grassy enclaves for picnicking or quiet meditation. And for those who want to learn about the wide array of plants, many species are labeled by name and region.

According the garden’s website, it includes “nearly all of California’s conifers and oaks as well as collections of California manzanitas wild lilacs, grasses, aquatic plants, and flowering bulbs that are among the most complete to be found anywhere.” A visit here is indeed a virtual tour of the Golden State.

But did you know that botanical gardens are found near or within urban centers all over the country?

Billy Discovers the Creek

Here is a website that lists the best botanical gardens across the United States.

What is your favorite Botanical Garden? What do you like to do there?

2 Thoughts on “Botanical Gardens: An Urban Refuge”

  • Ah, I do love botanic gardens! Not on the list you linked to, but one of my favorite places is the Morris Arboretum. It is accessible by public transportation from center city Philadelphia – regional rail, then bus (directions on the arboretum website). If you have a bike, you can take your bike on SEPTA’s regional rail trains and you could probably bike from the train station to the arboretum, although it is hilly and sadly, there are no bike paths along the roads to the arboretum. But is it not far. They have some really extraordinary trees at MA. Spring, when the cherries are blossoming, and fall, when the crab apples are fruiting, are always fun. And now they have the Out on a Limb structure, which allows you to roam about in the upper part of the canopy of several large trees. Really wonderful!

    • I am so glad to hear about this important resource, especially since it is accessible by public transport. Thank you so much for sharing Zuska!

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