The Western Kentucky Botanical Garden (2731 W. Second St.) is in prime growth mode in hopes of attracting more tourists.
In September, it launched a $2.8 million capital campaign, including a $1.1 million event center where The Cottage is now located.
And the work must continue in 2023.
Laurna Strehl, Executive Director of The Garden, said: “We start by planting new plant beds that appeal to some of the five senses: sight, taste and touch. These beds are in the back of the children’s playhouse.”
she said: These changes make the garden look wider and feel more expansive. It should be very noticeable. ”
WeatherBerry is a 4,000-square-foot historic home built in 1840, recently purchased by The Garden and converted into a visitor center.
Strehl says: Not very exciting, but it will have a big impact. Relocating the green chain link fence that separates the two properties connects the existing garden to Weatherbury’s backyard. Reuse the chain link fence along the tree line on the eastern property line. ”
And she said Independent Bank sponsors free admission on the first Saturday of each month from March to October.
Strehl says: Now that most of the construction is complete, the visitor experience will be unimpeded and thoroughly enjoyable. ”
Once the event center is complete, The Garden will have more space for indoor events, she said.
Garden weddings are now dependent on the weather.
But the event center will offer a backup plan, she said.
Last year, Strehl said, “Improved the asphalt driveway and added 33 parking spaces next to the house. and completed the path of healing.”
This is a 300-foot path lined with 12 ribbons of glass, each in a different color, representing the 12 most common cancers in Kentucky.
The path is also home to a 21-foot-tall butterfly sculpture by local glass artist Scott Pointer and local metal artist Chris Schertung.
In June, the Davis Financial Court approved a 2022-23 budget that includes $100,000 for the Western Kentucky Botanical Gardens.
Judge Al Mattingly said the allocation was because The Garden is “one of the cultural programs that draws tourists from other states.”
The garden opened in 1993 after Dr. Bill and Dr. Susie Tyler donated 10 acres of farmland to the city. Eight acres will be used for botanical gardens and two acres will be left for wildlife habitat.
In other words, we will celebrate our 30th anniversary in 2023.
Today, the 18-acre grounds include a large herb garden, rose garden, English Cottage Garden, Kentucky Symbol Quilt Garden, Japanese Memorial Garden, Ericaceae Garden, Moonlight Children’s Garden, University of Kentucky Extension Display Garden, and Western Kentucky. The university’s experimental garden.