The Williamsburg Botanical Garden's mission is to enhance the life of residents and visitors by promoting beautiful gardens and enjoyment of plants through year round educational and recreational programs. www.williamsburgbotanicalgarden.org.
The botanical garden is located at 5535 Centerville Road, in Freedom Park, Williamsburg; call 757-561-9444.
When, why and how did the garden begin?
In 2001, a group of horticulturists and citizens discussed the concept of creating a botanical garden for the Williamsburg residents and visitors. Community leaders gathered with the group to discuss the concept of promoting beautiful gardens together with educational and recreational programs.
Who were the originators?
Janice Wagner, John Greene, Lois Hornsby , Trist McConnell, Richard Mahone, Martha Hamilton-Philips, Ike Sisane.
How has the garden grown?
2001 First meeting with originators to propose the concept of a Botanical Garden in Williamsburg.
2002 established 501c3 not for profit organization with an active board of directors consisting of the originators and other interested citizens.
2003 to 2005 researched 13 potential sites which resulted in the 2 acre current location in Freedom Park.
2005 signed a 3 year Memorandum of Understanding with James City County to build a demonstration garden.
2005 completed the planning and began the site preparation of installing paths, amending soil and planting a variety of trees, shrubs and ground covers.
2008 reviewed the WBG achievements of growing the membership to over 100 and providing consistent plant care and educational programs for the community.
2011 now with over 200 members the WBG offers monthly programs for all ages, has incorporated a therapy garden for individuals with intellectual disabilities.
2012 partnered with James City County Recreation to further promote and offer educational programs for all ages.
What does the garden offer the community?
The WBG is a private botanical garden that will be funded through memberships, programs, special events, annual gifts, endowments, grants, philanthropic benefactors, corporate and individual gifts. Residents and Williamsburg visitors will benefit from the natural beauty, outdoor recreation and education for individuals of all ages and with special needs to enjoy the natural environment.
May 24: 5:30 – 8 pm Third Annual Vines and Wines Gala
Great food, music, silent auction and special guests
Rockefeller Garden next to the Williamsburg Inn
May 19: Macro-Invertebrates for children with Virginia's Watershed Academy will conduct a hands-on Macro invertebrates class for children ages 8 - 12. Children will learn what Macro invertebrates are, what their presence means in identifying healthy water and actually get to find real Macro invertebrates and identify them. Patty Maloney, Master Naturalist, Interpretive Center – Cost: free.
May 19: The Savvy Gardener with the James City County – Williamsburg Master Gardeners Barrels and Bins Team. This educational program is for the “savvy gardener” who enjoys sustainable and environmentally friendly projects to grow healthy, delicious, fresh vegetables, herbs, and more! A demo will show you how to build your own rain barrel and utilize the rain water for your garden. Learn how to make your own composter by using readily available material to enrich the soil already in your garden. And a “Do It Yourself” self watering container to grow great crops year after year. Barrels and Bins will also be available for sale. At the botanical garden. Cost: free
June 16: Children’s “Art in the Garden” with Linda Miller, Artist and Certified Master Naturalist. Come to the garden and create a botanical portrait in colored pencil or watercolor from a cutting that you select. Miller will lead this fun workshop where the children learn to see the wonders of flora in the summer season. All materials are provided. Saturday 9 am to 10:30 am. For children, 7 and older. Cost: free.
July 21: Children’s educational program on “Recycling and Reusing Natural Materials” with Barb Dunbar, York County MG and certified Master Naturalist. At the end of this class, children will make clothing items using leaves and plant materials easily found in the garden. Children will model their fashion project to show the adults. Cost: free.
Aug. 18: “Garden Detective’s” Children’s Workshop with Barb Dunbar and Linda Miller, Certified Virginia Master Naturalists. Come to the garden and bring your detective skills. The Williamsburg Botanical Garden team has put together a fun morning of exploration and learning. With a visual guide, walk around the garden and count the petals, learn about good bug ~ bad bugs and the micro habitats featured in the garden. For children 4 and older accompanied by an adult. Cost: free.
Sept. 15: “Searching the garden for life stages of a butterfly”. Butterfly program with Barb Dunbar, teacher. Cost: free.
Oct. 20: Release and tagging of monarch butterflies at the garden with master gardeners Angela Cingale and Barb Dunbar. Cost: free.
Nov. 17: The garden speaks, “There’s a fungus among us”! – Guest Speaker – children and adults program. Cost: free.
Growth Plans for the garden:
Over the next five years the WBG plans:
Double our current membership to 500.
Offer a minimum of two programs per month (one for youths and one for adults).
Increase building the WBG brand as a professional authority for people, plants and programs.
Complete projects and offer more programs for the therapy garden.
Hire an executive director.
Posted by Kathy Van Mullekom; email@example.com
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