We love botanic gardens. So when our youngest needed a lift to Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens on Sunday for a photo shoot, we were more than happy to oblige.
It was on our “to do-list” anyway as we were dying to see the latest addition. In 2015 four more hectares were developed as part of the Legacy Way tunnel project. It includes a conservation walk, kitchen garden, new lagoon and children’s playground. What an ambitious and big job this development was – they planted 31,000 new individual native plants covering more than 1,100 varieties.
There is quite a stark contrast between the lush, established parts of the garden and this addition with its young plants and wide open spaces. Although I immediately have to say that not all the plants are saplings – there is a 250 year old Cycad tree and Bottle Trees and Palms that are up to five metres tall! What impressed us most about this new development is that it displays the different Queensland habitats. The Conservation Walk is another gem displaying more than 200 rare and endangered plant species.
It is such a calming and inspirational experience wandering around the 56 hectares of splendour. There are approximately 20, 000 plants representing 5000 species from around the world. The plants are divided into thematic and geographical communities. My favourites being the Australian Rainforest, Bamboo Walk, Exotic Rainforest, African Plants, Tropical Dome, Conifer Collection, Subtropical and Tropical Rainforests.
There is ample parking, with a second parking lot allocated across the road from the gardens. Most areas of the gardens are wheel chair accessible with lots of picnic shelters, drinking fountains and toilets. There are also free guided walks that leave from the Information Kiosk daily at 11am and 1pm, except Sundays and public holidays. On most weekends there are also horticultural shows in the auditorium. We thoroughly enjoyed the exhibition on Ikebana that we attended.
If you don’t feel like bringing along picnic, you might like to grab something from Botanical. It is a café and functions centre that serves breakfast, lunch, snacks and beverages. It is open 7 days a week: 9am–4pm on weekdays and 8am-5pm on weekends.