While it might be weeks before we see signs of spring, Memorial’s Botanical Garden is already buzzing with the excitement of two national garden awards.
The garden was named Botanical Garden of the Year and its Pink Days in Bloom event was named Flower Event of the Year by the Canadian Garden Council at the 2015 North American Garden Tourism Conference in Toronto, Ont., March 16-18.
“The Botanical Garden is the province’s premier botanical garden and a pillar for Memorial’s public engagement activities and a resource centre for botanical research and education,” said Dr. Gary Kachanoski, president and vice-chancellor, Memorial University. “These awards are a testament to the commitment and hard work of the staff and volunteers at the garden and our community partners who have helped create a world class garden and nature tourist destination.”
According to the Canadian Garden Council, the Garden Tourism Awards are presented to organizations and individuals who have distinguished themselves in the development and promotion of the garden experience as a tourism attraction.
With 100 acres of natural forest dedicated to nature trails, beautiful cultivated and themed gardens and programming including diverse educational seminars, curriculum-based school programs and community outreach, Memorial’s Botanical Garden is a natural hub for visitor activity.
The awards support the garden’s public engagement mandate and recognize the unique partnership and collaborations fostered there. The Pink Days in Bloom event is an example of one of those collaborations, as it was spearheaded by the charitable organization, Friends of MUN Botanical Garden (FOG). Pink Days in Bloom was part of the garden’s participation in the Canadian Garden Council’s nationwide Garden Days celebrations and Linda Ryan’s Pink Days in Bloom, which is a partnership with the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (Atlantic). The collaboration will take place during Garden Days again this year, when FOG donates $1 for each plant sold to breast cancer research during a week-long celebration June 12-21.
“The Botanical Garden is a beautiful and inspirational destination for local residents and visitors,” said Liz Klose, director, Botanical Garden. “It fosters an appreciation of natural history in the development and future of the university and the province. We couldn’t be more excited to share it with our national colleagues and be recognized in such a wonderful way for horticultural excellence, and the dedication and hard work of our team, volunteers and partners. We hope these awards will be another compelling reason to visit the Garden.”
The Botanical Garden opens for the season May 1 and will be open daily 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and from Sept. 1-Nov. 30, open daily 10 a.m.-4 p.m. To view events and activities, please visit www.mun.ca/botgarden.