Story and images provided by Visit Stillwater
With flowers blooming and temperatures rising, spring has definitely arrived in Stillwater, Oklahoma and in our office, when we think spring, we think The Botanic Garden at Oklahoma State University. The Botanic Garden reaches over 50,000 visitors per year and is home to unique garden installations and hands-on activities we recommend you explore this season. You can visit any day between dawn and dusk at 3300 West 6th Avenue.
Find the Zen
From decoration, to art, to meditative practices – labyrinths have been used for thousands of years to calm the mind and now we have our very own in Stillwater. Created by Sara Hill, an OSU Ph.D. student, the labyrinth at The Botanic Garden is the perfect place for a calm, meditative walk to find solace, clear your head, and really take in the garden.
The contorted reflection installation is another element to enjoy an outdoor escape. Visitors are encouraged to either walk through the tunnel or pause on a bench while surrounded by wooden frames, which create unique and contrasting stripes of light and shade. You can find the contorted reflection installation just south of The Children’s Garden.
Act Like A Child
From hopscotch and rain sticks to outdoor chalkboards and giant creepy crawlers –The Children’s Garden is for both kids and kids-at-heart. Plan a picnic under the giant tree fort or catch some quiet time with a book in the reading nook. We’re certain The Color Garden will also trigger the fun of gardening. Hues of reds, blues, greens, and purples – planted to look like a giant pinwheel, will kick start your gardening inspiration.
Take Ideas Home With You
Looking for insight and guidance for your own garden? The Concept Garden, featured on OETA’s Oklahoma Gardening every Saturday and Sunday, has landscaping and gardening designs and expertise for you to learn and replicate in your own green space. Keith Reed, an OSU Extension Horticulture Educator and long-time advocate of The Botanic Garden, says, “the garden is a fabulous place to go for discovering ideas on garden dreams, designs, and plant selection,” and we couldn’t agree more.
Never A Dull Moment
From warm-weather yoga to pumpkins galore in the fall, there is never a dull moment at The Botanic Garden. In fact, their concert series, The Concert in the Garden, has an exciting new addition. Laura’s Band Stand, a new gazebo on the concert lawn, named after their Volunteer & Education Coordinator, will be home to The Concert in the Garden this 2017 season. Grab a blanket, pack a picnic, and enjoy an evening of music surrounded by the beauty and serenity of The Botanic Garden. The Concert in the Garden series will kick off on May 12th at 5:45 pm.
Hone Your Green Thumb
Around every corner is an opportunity to learn at The Botanic Garden, but the volunteer Ambassadors take it a step further by facilitating multiple programs throughout the season. The Ambassador Monthly Topics is a new program in which volunteers facilitate the learning and cover a wide range of topics from drones and Monarch tagging to Iris breeding and astronomy!
The Master Gardeners are also on hand to share their plethora of knowledge on the second Tuesday of each month through September. The series covers gardening tips, troubleshooting, and expert advice, sure to bring out a green thumb in even the most novice gardener.
The Botanic Garden at Oklahoma State University sits on just over 100 acres of land and is home to some of OSU’s advanced research from herbaceous and turf studies to entomology and art in nature. With a little bit of everything for everyone, you are sure to find something you will want to experience more than once!
To learn more about how to be a visitor in your own community, go to VisitStillwaterOK.org, “Like” Visit Stillwater on Facebook, and follow “@VisitStillwater” on Twitter. If you already consider yourself a seasoned “staycationer,” we would love to hear about your favorite hometown favorites and staycation tidbits. Use #staycationstillwater when you share your next local experience on social media! The Visitor Information Center, located at 2617 W. 6th Avenue, is open 24/7 or call 405-743-3697.
Have you heard?
A G-Scale Model Train Garden has been designed and constructed just in time for spring. The train will run from 10am – 12pm during their Open House events, every first and third Saturday of the month through the spring and summer. Running on electric tracks, the train will be chugging through a multi-level garden, inspired by the Oklahoma countryside. Visitors can expect to see xeriscape landscaping surrounding the train tracks – featuring a variety of succulents and plants, such as Mexican feather grass, proven to thrive in the Oklahoma climate. The G-Scale Model Train Garden is set to open in May! Be sure to go to VisitStillwater.org to stay in the know about The Botanic Garden’s events and updates.