You might think of the Missouri Botanical Garden only for a spring or summer outing. But a fall trip has its own unique color and beauty. This past weekend an out-of-town friend and I spent the afternoon roaming the many paths of the 79-acre oasis in the heart of St. Louis.
A Place for All Seasons
There’s something at the Garden for kids as well as adults throughout the year. What founder Henry Shaw commenced in 1859 has grown to be a National Historic Landmark and a center for science, conservation, education, and horticulture. Those of a certain age—such as myself—appreciate free parking, free admission that comes with an annual membership, flat walking trails, benches, and the trolley car.
I have a special fondness for the Japanese Garden with its meandering paths and secluded spots to sit and read or just enjoy the great outdoors. The Climatron, housed in a geodesic dome, recreates a lowland rain forest for its more than 400 tropical plants.
By checking out the Garden website, you can see, by month, which flowers are in bloom and in which location along the pathways. October bloomers include: autumn crocus, chrysanthemums, monk’s hood, viburnum, pineapple sage, New England asters and shrub rose.
Should you hunger or thirst while on tour, there’s the Sassafras Café and Café Flora. The Garden Gate Shop is a fun place to shop, especially for tasteful holiday gifts. Choose from among plants and containers, clothing, scarves, chimes, toys, games, books, jewelry, toiletries, and dinnerware.
A Walk with a View
Sassafras Café: Lunch 11a-3p, seasonal menu, sandwiches, soups, salads, snacks.
Café Flora Brunch: Sat-Sun March 19 through October 30, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Overlooks lily pools; inside and outside seating.
“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”