Thirsty Souls

Thirsty Souls: Green Houses

This week we're thirsty for a place of growth. Fan out over the flora at these sensational botanical gardens.

1. Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York

The BBG is a true phoenix; the site was originally an ash dump, but it is now home to 39-acres of urban greenery and horticultural high-jinks. The Garden offers a variety of engaging workshops, including Shambhala Yoga (for adults) and Origami Academy (for kids). Visit in April or early May to see the cherry blossom trees in full bloom.

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2. Eden Project, Cornwall, England

This educational charity/social enterprise is a phenomenal combo of outdoor gardens and biomes - supplemented by a restaurant, a juice bar, a climbing frame, a giant bee sculpture, and and England's longest zip line. You can also spend the night at the on-site hostel in bedrooms made from shipping containers. 

Eden's Gardens for Life program helps establish school gardens that benefit children in Kenya's Rift Valley. Faith in humanity restored.

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View from the 30m lookout in the tropical Eden project biome🌺

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3. Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, Richmond, Va

Consistently voted one of the best botanical gardens in the U.S., Lewis Ginter boasts 50 acres of green and a 63-ft domed conservatory. The annual Butterflies LIVE! exhibit attracts swallowtails, monarchs, blue morphos, and skippers for visitors to enjoy and photograph. Share your best pic from LIVE! on Instagram with #Bflies and you could win a family membership to LGBG and passes to other Richmond area attractions.

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4. Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Columbus, OH

Transport yourself to the tropics by touring the Palm House and sit in on a glass blowing demonstration at the Hot Shop for a truly singular Sunday. Visit on the second Sunday of each month and you'll also be able to catch an animal presentation offered in conjunction with the Columbus Zoo!

5. Huntington Library, San Marino, Ca.

More than a dozen gardens over 120 acres comprise The Huntington Botanical Gardens. Read a sultry sonnet to your date in the Shakespeare Garden;  party with prickly plants in the 100-year-old Desert Garden; and turn the kiddos loose for sensory play in the Children's Garden. Clearly, there's something for everyone at Huntington.

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6. Hortus Botanicus, Amsterdam

Founded in the 1600's, this is one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world. Fuchsias, cycads, and carnivorous plants are the usual headliners at Hortus Botanicus, with tulips taking center stage in April.

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7. United States Botanical Garden, Washington DC

A botanical garden was part of George Washington's original vision for the capital city, and this living museum was established by the U.S. Congress in 1820.  The National Garden features plants native to the Mid-Atlantic and includes a Rose Garden and the First Ladies Water Garden, while the Conservatory includes a board spectrum of species including orchids, succulents, medicinal plants, and the flora of various locales (the tropics, the Mediterranean, and Hawaii - to name a few). Toss a penny into Bartholdi Fountain and your dreams just might come true.

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8. Kew Royal Botanic Gardens, London, UK

Give yourself more than a day to take in Kew's 100+ attractions; we recommend an entire weekend. Don't miss the giant waterlilies, the Pagoda, or the Treetop Walkway - not to mention some of the most idyllic wedding venues in all of London.   

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9. National Botanic Gardens, Dublin, Ireland

What better place to see green than on the Emerald Isle? Founded in 1795, this site is only 3.5km from the city's center and welcomes guests year round.  Don't be afraid to lose yourself among the ferns, vines, and flowers, but keep an eye out for a clover in case you need a bit of luck.

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10. Myriad Botanical Garden, Oklahoma City, OK

Clear your mind by dropping into this 15 acre garden the middle of downtown OKC. Permanent sculptures, a dog park, and a handful of splash fountains bring the fun, but what really sets Myriad apart is the unique architectural design of the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory. This one-of-a-kind walk-through houses 13,000 square feet of plants divided in to two climates (Tropical Wet and Tropical Dry) and would be the perfect spot to pop the question.

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11. University of Copenhagen Botanical Museum, København K, Denmark

This Botanical Museum holds the largest Danish collection of living plants, and though scientific research is its primary aim, the public is welcome to embrace its beauty as well.  Visitors can stroll the grounds, grab lunch at one of the open-air cafés, and pick up honey from the botanical gardens at the gift shop.

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Cactus Mart in Morongo Valley, CA, is a stomping ground for desert vibes. Since it's one of our favorite specialty shops, we recently did a photo shoot on location and couldn't be more thrilled with how it turned out. Cacti+succulents+ three flavors of CALIWATER = a recipe for success. Cheers!