The Key West Botanical Garden was developed for the study, conservation, and dissemination of the diversity of plant species. The majestic Key West gardens are no exception. The gardens provide a source of education for anyone interested in Key West flowers, plants, and trees.

What is a Botanical Garden?

A botanical garden is generally an institution authorized by a body that can be public, private, or associative. The management can be mixed in certain cases. Botanical gardens are characterized by the scientific collection of living plants that are subject to observation and study by gardeners. Consequently, these type of gardens add aesthetic and general urban interest to the area.

Botanical Garden Objectives

Above all, the collection and conservation of plants, local and/or exotic, is the main objective of a botanical garden. The Key West tropical forest & botanical garden protects all plant species at risk of extinction.

Location of Key West Botanical Garden

The garden is located on Stock Island at the edge of New Town. It contains fauna and flora from the Florida Keys, Cuba, and the Caribbean basin. The Key West tropical forest and botanical garden covers 11 acres in total and is also considered an arboretum.

These gardens are home to many endangered flora and fauna and is the only frost-free botanical garden in the USA. Therefore you will see many species of Key West plants and get to appreciate and learn about biodiversity.

Learning Workshops

The Key West´s botanical garden teaches the importance of native plants and species through knowledge sharing. The gardens have a Living Laboratory which includes interactive workshops. These educational programs ensure that young people and adults will learn how to help protect ecosystems.

Botanical gardens Key West is a place you should visit at least once in your life, especially if you curious about Key West native flowers & plants. So let´s take a look at the history of this precious botanical garden.

Key West Botanical Garden History

The Key West tropical forest and botanical garden was founded and developed by the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FEMA) back in 1939. During the great depression Key West tried to boost the local workforce and tourism, however went bankrupt.

The garden occupied 55 acres with flagstone walkways, greenhouses, orchid houses, an amphitheater, and an amazing aviary. However, during World War II the garden suffered damage and faced many problems due to economic issues. Moreover, sections of the Key West botanical garden were used to build storage tanks and a military hospital to treat soldiers.

By 1961 the Key West gardens only occupied 7.5 acres due to further degradation. As a result, the City of Key West finally considered the garden as a permanent wildlife sanctuary, botanical garden, and arboretum. The Key West Garden Club took responsibility for the gardens in 1972 and began a restoration project with many participants.

In 1988, the Key West Botanical Garden Society was created and finally completed its vital mission. The mission: commitment to the preservation of the Key West garden and the maintenance of the natural and unique ecosystem. So these days the Key West gardens cover 11 acres and are slowly regaining lost ground.

Why Visit the Key West Botanical Gardens?

This incredible garden is the perfect place for a family day trip. The Key West gardens are maintained as a natural recreational site with many species of Florida keys plants. Visitors are encouraged to take their time as they explore and see the unique environment the garden offers.

There are interactive workshops and educational programs you can take advantage of. Therefore the botanical gardens give your whole family the opportunity to learn about nature and its ecosystems. A day at the Key West botanical garden will relieve you of any stress and totally recharge your batteries!

Botanical Garden General Information

The Key West gardens offer free parking, picnic area, bicycle tracks, free WiFi, and smartphone tours with audio and text. The garden grounds have restrooms, water refill station, and gift shop where you can buy beverages or local handmade articles. Just to clarify, dogs are permitted within this Key West nature preserve.

The cost for an all-day pass to the Key West botanical garden varies. An all-day adult pass is $10, meanwhile a senior all-day pass cost $7. Children can enter the botanical gardens for free with at least one adult admission.

Active or retired military personal can obtain an all-day pass, which includes up to 5 family members, for $7. In addition, group tour admissions (maximum of 14 people) can be arranged for $35.

You can also become a member of the Key West botanical garden, which lets you enjoy unlimited free admission. As a result membership gets you access to special events, discounts from the gift shop, and many offers from the garden partners.

Garden Volunteers

You can become a volunteer if you are passionate about nature in the Florida Keys. The Key West botanical garden offers many opportunities. So for those of you who love flora and fauna, you could work there and help maintain this beautiful place.

Plan a Family Trip to Key West

So what are you waiting for? Be sure to plan a visit to the Key West botanical garden. You won’t be disappointed and you’ll enjoy a great day with the whole family. We recommend you check their events calendar so you can coordinate a special visit to Key West.

We can take you and your family to Key West if you are wondering how to get there,  Our large fleet of charter yachts depart from Miami and will take you to the Florida Keys. So fill in our Yacht Charter Quote form below and we will provide you with a Free no-obligation quote.

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