U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington DC


The Conservatory is a large Lord & Burnham greenhouse divided into different rooms each demonstrating various types of habitats. After renovations back in 2001, the Garden now includes the public display gardens at Frederic Auguste Bartholdi Park, the Conservatory and the Administrative Building; the plant production and support area house the greenhouse bays and maintenance. A tropical paradise, its richly scented halls delirious with color and bloom, the U.S. Botanic Garden has always been an oasis for weary visitors!

Presently, the U.S. Botanic Garden is home to almost 10,000 living specimens, some of them over 165 years old. Bartholdi Park is located across the street from the Conservatory. This beautifully landscaped flower garden has as its centerpiece, a classical style fountain that was created by Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, the French sculptor who also designed the Statue of Liberty.

The separate rooms in the Conservatory include the:

  • The Garden Court
  • Rare and Endangered Plants (rare species, endangered species)
  • Plant Exploration
  • Orchid House (orchids)
  • Medicinal Plants (medicinal plants)
  • Desert (desert species)
  • Hawaii
  • Garden Primeval (primeval)
  • Plant Adaptation
  • Jungle (jungle species; this is the largest of the rooms and includes a second-story catwalk so that the jungle canopy may be observed from both below and above)
  • Children’s Garden (courtyard; features many thriving temperate annuals used to encourage interest in plants)
  • Southern Exposure (courtyard), on the south side of the building, is surrounded by glass walls, receiving more warmth. It features many plants from the Southeast and Southwest, which would not be able to live in the colder District of Columbia climate if not for the microclimate.

The Garden was closed for renovations on September 1, 1997, and reopened to the public on December 11, 2001. At the time of closure for renovation, plants in the collection were placed in storage at the USBG Production Facility, retired to greenhouses in Florida, or composted.


The Conservatory is open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Bartholdi Park is accessible from dawn until dusk

The U.S. Botanic Garden is located across from the U.S. Capitol Building along First St. SW, between Maryland Ave. and C St. Bartholdi Park sits behind the Conservatory and is accessible from Independence Ave., Washington Ave. or First St. The closest Metro station is Federal Center SW.

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