While balcony container gardeners enjoy their small-space urban gardens, sometimes a few container plants on an apartment balcony above a busy street just isn’t peaceful enough. Balcony gardeners might not be able to have a peaceful, large garden, but there are public gardens and arboretums near every major city. Don’t just fawn over pictures of luxurious gardens, get out there and enjoy a day at a public garden! You may even bring some gardening inspiration home to your own balcony container garden.
If you live in or are visiting the Charlotte, North Carolina, area, why not visit the University of North Carolina at Charlotte Botanical Gardens?
- The 10-acre botanical gardens include the 4,500-square-foot McMillan Greenhouse, the 3-acre Susie Harwood Garden and 7-acre Van Landingham Glen.
- The gardens were founded in 1966 so biology students could have a “living classroom.”
- The McMillan Greenhouse, which holds more than 1,000 plant specimens, houses a rare Titan Arum plant, which has the largest flower in the world (up to 10 feet tall). In 2007, it bloomed for three days and attracted thousands of visitors.
- Visit the Harwood Garden in the winter – it has a collection of winter-interest plants that are in their prime from December to February.
- Van Landingham Glen, the largest garden on site, has more than 1,000 native plant species, one of the most diverse rhododendron collections in the Southeast and a 120-year-old log cabin.
- The University of north Carolina at Charlotte Botanical Gardens offers classes for gardeners. These are actually workshops – they are not for school credit and do not count toward a degree, so any gardener wanting to learn more can attend a workshop.
- Check the botanical gardens’ website for events at the gardens. There are plant society meetings, plant sales and more.
- About 25,000 people visit the gardens every year.
- Schedule a tour of the gardens 10 days in advance ($3 per person).
UNCC Botanical Gardens Quick Info
9201 University City Boulevard, Charlotte, North Carolina 28223-0001
FREE admission (donations welcome)
Open daily during daylight hours (greenhouse is open Monday through Saturday 10am-3pm and Sundays from 1-4pm)