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Tuesday, May 1, 2018 - Contact: 225-273-6439

BREC to Celebrate the Phase 1 Completion of Independence Botanical Gardens

BREC has recently completed Phase 1 renovations of the Independence Botanical Gardens located at 7950 Independence Boulevard. A grand opening celebration is being held Saturday, May 12 with the ribbon cutting beginning at 10 a.m. near the lawn garden, located behind the East Baton Rouge Parish Main Library and Café Plaza. Guests are invited to stay after the ceremony to enjoy garden tours, food, music and family fun!

In partnership with the Botanic Garden Foundation, the Independence Botanical Gardens offer a collection of garden rooms reflecting the sense of place of South Louisiana and the diversity of plants and garden traditions throughout the world. It is a place where visitors can connect to the beauty and importance of floral and natural ecosystems. The uniqueness of the Crape Myrtle Grove, Rose Garden, Parterre Garden and Daylily Garden and deep South qualities of the Live Oaks Grove and Louisiana Iris Garden give the Independence Botanical Gardens distinguish it from the other public gardensin Baton Rouge. 

Phase 1 of the Master Plan serves as the “Front Gate” for the Botanical Gardens from the Library and Café Plaza. The new contemporary style formal Butterfly and Parterre Garden complements the architecture of the Library while also expanding the formal geometry of the existing Rose Garden as the hub and focal point of the entire area.  The new renovations allow the gardens to engage more guests through activities, educational programming, changing displays, incorporation of art and a venue appeal for special events such as horticulture/garden shows and plants sales, weddings, retreats and more.

Other additions include a lawn garden located between the Café and gardens, granite millstone fountain, donated by the Baton Rouge Botanic Garden Foundation, a color garden featuringtwelve garden plots, a garden promenade, library and garden walkways lined with South Living Magazine approved plants donated by Plant Development Services Inc. and an entry arbor to later be covered with confederate jasmine. These expansions and enhancements will open the gardens to a wider audience and elevate them to a higher level of quality, with the hope of reaching the goal of being known as a premier botanical garden throughout East Baton Rouge Parish, the region, and nationally.

Plans for future expansion include but are not limited to a large event garden with the possible introduction of a performance stage near the Theatre, new plant rooms such as a shade garden, urban display gardens, azalea and camellia gardens, native plant and wetland gardens, meditation gardens and a new conservatory attached to the Garden Center which is currently undergoing renovations. The Botanical Gardens Foundation, along with BREC, have a number of programming opportunities in mind such as events, outdoor classrooms, library collections, and other nature-related experiences.

To celebrate the new additions a ribbon cutting ceremony will be held on the new lawn, along with a second ribbon cutting to officially dedicate the new Independence Community Park playground located near East Airport Avenue. The public is invited to stay after to enjoy an afternoon of Garden Tours provided by the Baton Rouge Botanical Garden Foundation and volunteers, food from the Garden Café and City Gelato, children’s story time with Beauty, BREC on the Geaux, music, and much more until 1 p.m.!

To learn more about the Independence Botanical Gardens visit http://www.brec.org/index.cfm/page/BotanicGarden. For more information on this event, contact BREC’s Special Events Manager Ashlyn Lambert at 225-272-9200 ext. 470 or Ashlyn.Lambert@brec.org  

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