National Parks / Natural World

Botanic Gardens Washington

Where is it at?

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Botanic Gardens
245 First Street SW
Washington
DC
20024
Tel: 202-225-8333

Where are we going today?

Three acres of gardens, including a state-of-the-art building holding over 4000 plants from all over the world - tropical and seasonal plants and it's FREE!!



The United States Botanic Garden (USBG) is a living plant museum. Exhibits interpret the role of plants in supporting earth's diverse and fragile ecosystems and in enriching human life. The Conservatory and surrounding terraces, Bartholdi Park, and National Garden are open to the public. Established by Congress in 1820, the U.S. Botanic Garden is one of the oldest botanic gardens in North America. The Garden has been administered through the Office of the Architect of the Capitol since 1934.



The Conservatory houses permanent collections of plants from subtropical, tropical, and arid regions and showcases orchids, medicinal, economic, endangered, and Jurassic plants. From late May to mid-October, the Conservatory Terrace features displays of thematic container gardens.



Bartholdi Park is across Independence Avenue from the Conservatory. Here visitors will find a tapestry of theme gardens surrounding the historic Bartholdi Fountain. The gardens suggest interesting plants and designs at a scale suitable for the home landscape.



The National Garden is adjacent to the Conservatory. It features a Mid-Atlantic native plant garden, Rose Garden, First Ladies Water Garden, Butterfly Garden, and Amphitheater.

Email attraction

When can we go?

10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Every day

Teachers corner

Teachers will find an array of tools and resources on our website: http://www.usbg.gov/education/schools.cfm.



Learn more about:

Linking Our Lives to Plants Curriculum, for grade levels 2-8+, to guide adult leaders and students through a set of activities that will help students learn about plants and the ways they support human societies and our environment (available as a PDF file for download).



And "School Garden Wizard," a guide to creating a real school garden --



And much more!.

I'm Hungry!

Visitors are encouraged to bring brown-bag lunches and eat on our grounds. In addition, we are located across from the Capitol near the National Mall where a multitude of dining opportunities are offered..

Any Top Tips?

We're open indoors and out every day of the year. Come dressed to enjoy!.

Doing our bit

The United States Botanic Garden is an institution dedicated to demonstrating the aesthetic, cultural, economic, therapeutic, and ecological importance of plants to the well-being of humankind. We foster conservation by acting as a repository for endangered species and our programs always seek to inform the public about the value of plants in nature. We are leaders in sustainability policy and practice and our gardens include a rainwater garden that demonstrates smart water practices.



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Need a little extra help?

The Conservatory and outdoor gardens are wheelchair-accessible and we have wheelchairs available for loan. Please come to our Visitor Services desk at the front of the Conservatory to borrow one..

What people are saying?

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    Many beautiful gardens--from tropical jungle to desert and everywhere in between. My favorite area is the Regional Garden. Plenty of places to sit and take it all in. Intricate small-scale DC landmarks are scattered among the plants and flowers in the main court, each made out of plant materials. Much to be enjoyed here!

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    came for trains. long line. disappointing one room. do not waste your time unless coming for gardens. separate line for gardens. big gaps in taped of line for train. can easily cut line. try Ashland VA train day for trains.

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    This place is a nice change of pace from the other Smithsonian museums. Free of charge, the Botanic Garden houses numerous varieties of plants and flowers. They categorized plants into sections, so there's a desert section with cacti, a medicinal plant section, a jungle with orchids, and more. I do wish that they would post a fact or two underneath the name of the plant.

    For Christmas, they had a model train exhibit, where they built a special display and had model trains running throughout the display. These trains were replicated from past World's...Read More

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    The center room of the Graden always makes me feel like I've gone on an Indiana Jones Adventure- right in the center of DC! The Garden is made even more wonderful around the Holiday Season. Check out the wonderful Model Train exhibit to see miniature replicas of Landmark US buildings as well as buildings from around the world - all made out of plant material! Oh - and you can also see your favorite Thomas the Tank Engine trains too!

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    Quick & beautiful, love the citrus flowers fragrance!

Submit a review

by Alice Wang

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This place is a nice change of pace from the other Smithsonian museums. Free of charge, the Botanic Garden houses numerous varieties of plants and flowers. They categorized plants into sections, so there's a desert section with cacti, a medicinal plant section, a jungle with orchids, and more. I do wish that they would post a fact or two underneath the name of the plant.

For Christmas, they had a model train exhibit, where they built a special display and had model trains running throughout the display. These trains were replicated from past World's Fairs. Great exhibit for kids.

They also decorated the place with seasonal decorations and displays, such as artistic sculptures of many DC landmarks and buildings made from natural plant materials. These were nestled alongside colorful poinsettias and other seasonal greenery. I thought that was really spectacular. It also helped that it was warm inside while the weather was frigid cold outside.

The Weather

Thursday

Conditions: Partly Cloudy
Temp: 48° F / 9° C
Humidity: 36 %
Wind: WNW - 14 MPH

Friday

Conditions: Clear
Temp: 41° F / 5° C
Humidity: 43 %
Wind: WNW - 17 MPH

Saturday

Conditions: Clear
Temp: 40° F / 4° C
Humidity: 44 %
Wind: WNW - 12 MPH

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