On The Garden Path: Birmingham Botanical Gardens

Botanical garden in Birmingham, Ala., is a beautiful, peaceful oasis

| June 2008

Birmingham Botanical Gardens in Birmingham, Ala., offers visitors a glimpse of a wide variety of plants and flowers. It also offers educational field trips for schoolchildren interested in learning about plants and gardening - hundreds of children visit the gardens each year.

While there are too many specialty gardens within Birmingham Botanical Gardens (BBG) to discuss all of them, here are just a few.

Individual gardens to enjoy

Formally dedicated in 1991, the Abroms Rhododendron Species Garden is a favorite spot for visitors who enjoy reading a book under the rustic swing arbor or in the gazebo. Some of the most uncommon plants in the gardens' collection can be found and admired here. The evergreen rhododendrons are in peak bloom in late May. However, other species and deciduous azaleas flower before and after the rhododendrons' main show.

The All-America Selections (AAS) Display Garden consists of seed-grown annuals and bedding plants that have been deemed superior by the AAS team of experts. This garden is typically planted by May 1 and is removed by Oct. 15, but when it's in bloom, the garden greets visitors with a wondrous blast of color.

The Asian Glade is a lightly shaded garden that features species, cultivars and hybrids of plants from Asia. Several of these plants have close relatives native to the southeastern United States. The garden also contains some little-known plants, including specimens of Bambusa species - bamboos that clump rather than run - as well as a growing collection of Paeonia suffruticosa - the tree peony - which is the national flower of China.

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