Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens
The mission of The Friends is to perpetuate and advance Birmingham Botanical Gardens as a community resource and destination of botanical, horticultural, and educational significance in partnership with the City of Birmingham. Birmingham Botanical Gardens promotes public knowledge and appreciation of plants and the environment through the operation of the gardens, educational programs, special events, a horticultural library, and passive recreation.
The Gardens is one of Birmingham's most treasured and popular destinations, is open year-round and provides free admission to all visitors. Its 67.5 acres feature more than 20 thematic gardens, each classified into one of three types: gardens of collections, gardens of nature and gardens of culture. Gardens of collections include the Abroms Rhododendron Species Garden, the Fern Glade, the Ireland Iris Garden, and the Dunn Formal Rose Garden. Gardens of nature include the Barber Alabama Woodlands and the Kaul Wildflower Garden. Gardens of culture include the Formal Garden, the Japanese Garden, and the Southern Living Garden. The Gardens’ diverse plant collections celebrate the wonder of the plant world, illustrate Alabama’s biodiversity, offer inspiration for home gardeners and provide seasonal interest with ever-changing horticultural displays. Miles of walking paths encourage exploration and offer opportunity for walking and jogging.
The Friends' educational offerings promote sustainability and environmental stewardship, and impact not only garden visitors but also seek to benefit all residents of the greater Birmingham area. Free, hands-on, curriculum-based science programming is offered to over 10,000 kindergarten through 6th grade students each year through the Discovery Field Trips that correlate with the Alabama State Course of Study and are aligned with National Science Education Standards. Summer camps, teacher training, and adult classes, lectures, and workshops are also offered. A large cadre of volunteers plays an essential role in supporting the mission and programs.
The Library at the Gardens is the largest public horticultural library in the southeast. It is part of the Jefferson County Library Cooperative and offers more than 6,000 circulating titles focused on gardening, horticulture, and the environment.