The Botanical Gardens at Asheville is a 10-acre green expanse located within the city at 151 W.T. Weaver Boulevard next to UNCA. Operated mainly through volunteer power, the organization dedicates itself to the study and promotion of native plants and habitats of the Southern Appalachians.
“We’re so fortunate to have this beautiful garden in Asheville,” says Suzanne Wodek, garden president. “I’d say my favorite part is meeting locals and visitors from across the nation and world—people who stop by to share their love of native plants and gardening.”
The BGA is free and open to the public from sunup to sundown every day of the year. Volunteers operate the gift shop and maintain the plantings. “We always need volunteers, especially in our gift shop,” Wodek says.
The BGA hosts educational programs for adults and children. The gift shop offers garden-related items from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 12-4 p.m. on Sundays. The BGA facility features two meeting rooms for rent, and people may also reserve the gardens for small weddings.
The gardens are funded by memberships, donations, meeting and wedding reservations fees, the occasional grant and gift-shop sales. The BGA is a community treasure: the perfect place to meditate, walk, do yoga, have a picnic, sit by the stream, or learn about native plants. Info: www.ashevillebotanicalgardens.org.