The Best Botanical Gardens to Visit in and Around the US

Perhaps you were lucky enough to escape the cold last month while on spring break, but if you weren’t, it’s finally beginning to feel as if spring is officially here.  As the temperatures rise and the rain begins to fall, the grass is now turning green and signs of life are here.

As the leaves start returning to the trees, it’s time to get back outside and appreciate what Mother Nature has in store for us. Botanical gardens are one of the best places to see the return of green, as well as colorful flowers, especially early in the season. Even better, some of the best botanical gardens around the country are close to The Parking Spot’s locations.  Here’s a list of some of the best gardens to visit to fully indulge in the green of spring: Desert Botanical Garden, Phoenix, Arizona If the cold hasn’t quite left your hometown yet, Phoenix’s warm weather will be an added comfort.  The best time to visit this garden is during the spring, March-May, when desert wildflowers and cacti are in bloom - plus you’ll miss the sweltering heat of summer.  Something that makes this garden unique is that it has the most arid-adapted plants of any botanical garden in the country. Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, Missouri This National Historic Landmark, founded in 1859, is one of the oldest botanical gardens in the United States.  Primarily a Victorian style garden, the Missouri Botanical Gardens has several different gardens within its boundaries. These include the Kresko Family Victorian Garden, which mixes beautiful hardscape with ornate flower beds.  Another great aspect of this garden is that it’s a sub-district of the Metropolitan Zoological Park and Museum District, which means admission is free. Ganna Walska Lotusland, Santa Barbara, California This famous garden was created at the home of Ganna Walska, a Polish opera singer and garden lover.  On the grounds of the estate are several smaller gardens including butterfly, cactus, cycad and fern gardens.  The most popular attractions include the Japanese, cactus and water gardens.  To visit, advance reservations are required. New York Botanical Garden, New York City, New York What helps to make this one of the best gardens to visit is that its 250 acres are so close to one of the most urban areas in the United States.  A must see feature is the 50 acres of forest that are leftover from when Europeans settled in New York during the 17th century.  The garden is open year-round and has special exhibits and events during each season. After being stuck inside all winter, get outdoors and take advantage of the warmer weather.  Be sure to visit the best botanical gardens near The Parking Spot locations this spring.  
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