PALM BEACH DAILY NEWS: NEW TROPICAL WETLAND GARDEN TO OPEN AT MOUNTS BOTANICAL GARDEN IN WPB
By Jan Sjostrom – Daily News Arts Editor
Florida is famous for its wetlands, but there aren’t many you can stroll without getting your toes wet while viewing colorful aquatic plants. But you can at the new tropical wetland garden that opens this week at Mounts Botanical Garden of Palm Beach County in West Palm Beach.
The see-through, 4-foot wide walkways that criss-cross Windows on the Floating World: Blume Tropical Wetland Garden give visitors the feeling of walking on water. The walkways frame four “windows” planted with aquatic plants in submerged containers that will rotate with the seasons. The garden also features waterfalls that tumble over natural stones, a place for wading birds and a bromeliad wall.
A private dedication ceremony will be held Tuesday. The public opening will coincide with the Tropical Fruit Festival held 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sundayat the garden, 531 N. Military Trail.
Palm Beach resident Polly Reed headed the board of the Friends of the Mounts Botanical Garden, the facility’s fund-raising arm, during the project’s development. “It’s really incredible,” she said. “You can walk right into the floating world.”
The 13,000-square-foot garden is the largest new garden in Mounts’ history. It was designed by artists Mags Harries and Lajos Heder in collaboration with Wantman Group Inc. and overseen by the county’s art in public places program. Aside from $35,000 from Palm Beach County, the $500,000 cost was paid for with private donations.
The Friends considered a couple other ideas for a new garden, but “the importance of environmental conservation and wetlands in Florida tipped the scale,” said Rochelle Wolberg, interim operations manager and director of programs. The garden will include interpretive glass panels that will educate visitors on key components of the wetland.
Education is a core mission of Mounts, which is a facility of the Palm Beach County Extension Service in partnership with the University of Florida. The property incorporates 22 demonstration gardens. For information call 233-1757 or visit mounts.org.
Read the full story on the Daily News website here: http://www.palmbeachdailynews.com/news/local/new-tropical-wetland-garden-open-mounts-botanical-garden-wpb/hszfUrPx84L84M4M2dID1N/