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The New Discovery Garden Opens, Inspiring Kids to Explore

June 2015

BBG welcomed visitors into the new Discovery Garden for the first time on June 6, and we are thrilled that it has been instantly embraced by children and adults alike. The Discovery Garden now offers a marvelous immersive space where children of all ages can experience the natural world with hands-on activities and educational programming. At four times the size of BBG’s original Discovery Garden, it is better able to accommodate the growing number of families and school groups that visit BBG annually. As Anne Raver wrote in her recent article for The New York Times, “The new garden is a landscape to get lost in, full of hills and valleys; light and shade; and curving, intersecting paths.”

Designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, the garden encourages exploration and engagement. The landscape is comprised of three habitats—Marsh, Meadow, and Woodland—and has interactive science activity stations and exhibits sprinkled throughout that inspire children to make their own discoveries. Children can try their hand at vegetable gardening in the Hamm Children’s Learning Courtyard, observe swimming insects from the Marsh under a magnifying glass, hypothesize what causes the bumpy burls on a cork tree, or step inside a super-sized bird’s nest and construct their own from twigs.

Photos by Liz Ligon.

An interactive science activity station at Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Discovery Garden The Discovery Garden at Brooklyn Botanic Garden Kids in a super-sized bird's nest at Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Discovery Garden A child at the water pump station at Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Green Facts

The Garden is working to save water, and you can too. The average New York home wastes as much as 11,000 gallons of water each year—that’s 30 gallons a day!