New National Garden

As long as I was down on the Mall for the National Book Festival, I decided to stroll over to have a look at the brand new National Garden, which is located between the Botanical Garden conservatory (map) and the National Museum of the American Indian.

A rare privately funded project, some 20 years elapsed from conception until yesterday’s ribbon cutting ceremony which was hosted by the First Lady.

The centerpiece of the three-acre site is the Rose Garden (the rose was selected by Congress as the national flower in 1986). Other featured areas include the Water Garden, a Regional Garden of native Mid-Atlantic flora, the Butterfly Garden, a canopied Lawn Terrace for special events, and an exhibit of winning children’s depictions of state flowers. Today was Family Fun Day with lots of activities for kids and live music on the Lawn Terrace. More information about the history and development of the National Garden can found at the Washington Post article National Garden Blooms at Last.

Before returning to the Book Festival, I needed some energy so I stopped across the street at the NMAI Mitsitam (Let’s eat!) Café. Although overpriced, the food there is outstanding and you can select from daily specials that represent the cuisine of native peoples from South, Central and North America.

2 Comments so far

  1. WashingtonGardener (unregistered) on October 4th, 2006 @ 3:52 pm

    I went to the press preview of the National Garden on Friday — aside from the rose garden and the water feature this is a very unfinished and recently planted oasis. It will take a few years to fill in and really be a showcase. I’m looking forward to following their progress and many return trips.

  2. Doug (unregistered) on October 5th, 2006 @ 1:42 am

    And it only cost 11+ million dollars and 20 years in the making! I agree, give it a few seasons and it will fill-in.

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