Flowers get full focus this spring with the Zoo and Gardens Botanical Bash

Flowers get full focus this spring with the Zoo and Gardens Botanical Bash

Written by Anthony Richards

The Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is more than just the animals and engages in the wonders of nature as a whole, which will be in full focus during the Botanical Bash scheduled for April 13-May 12.

There are plenty of fun and interactive exhibitions and events taking place throughout the spring where the beauty of the world’s flowers will be on full display.

What makes the Botanical Bash so special is that the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is one of the only zoos and botanical gardens in the country.

The exhibition will be held for a month, daily from 9am to 5pm and will begin selling horticultural plants on April 13 and 14.

The plant sale will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. where residents can come and purchase different plants and interact with the zoo’s horticulture staff who will be on hand to answer any questions.

There are lots of unique things for families to do together where adults and kids can have fun together, including a seed bomb activity that will take place every Saturday and Sunday.

As the name suggests, attendees will create a “seed bomb” using dirt, clay and seeds. The seed bombs made can then be taken home and planted as they will all be flowers grown wild in Florida.

Another interactive way to help educate about the native plants of the area is a native plant scavenger hunt.

On Arbor Day, which falls on April 26 this year, the zoo will distribute tree saplings that can also be planted at their home, as the zoo looks to do its part in tree education and conservation.

Several lecture series will also be held for guests specializing in the field of botany.

Lectures will be every Thursday and will be held in the Samburu Hall of the main camp.

There will be four separate lecture series, including Judy Willis with the Florida Native Plant Society, who will talk about what’s native on April 18.

Urban forestry will be the point of discussion on April 25, as Joe Anderson will delve into the topic as a forester with JEA.

Water conservation will be the focus during a lecture by Deirdre Irwin of the St. Johns River Water Management District on May 2, and the lectures will be concluded by Lindsey Spears with Paintings and Objects, who will discuss the different artistic options one can place in their garden.

Just as the focus of the first two days was on plant sales, the final two days will be an art festival in the garden on May 11 and 12 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

More than 30 vendors will participate in the festival, and some of the art forms displayed in the park will vary.

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