New Orleans Botanical Gardens, New Orleans

4.0
#13 of 20 in Parks in New Orleans
The New Orleans Botanical Garden is a botanical garden located in City Park, New Orleans, Louisiana. The first classical garden in New Orleans, it was funded by the Works Progress Administration.
1930s: Planning and constructionThe Botanical Gardens in New Orleans City Park was unveiled in 1936, as a part of the massive restructuring and development project of City Park that took place in the 1930s. Although development plans for the new City Park were originally chosen in 1930, it was not until the mid-1930s that funding came from the Works Progress Administration, which administered the $12 million project that employed nearly 20,000 workers in New Orleans City Park. Initially constructed to be a rose garden, the Botanical Garden boasted four outdoor garden rooms, an elegant reflecting pool, and the massive Conservatory of the Two Sisters dedicated to housing some of the garden's more delicate plant life.
Design and construction was overseen by three innovators: architect Richard Koch, landscaper William Wierdorn, and sculptor Enrique Alférez. Together, the three artists designed the Gardens in the style of the widely popular “art-deco” era of the 1930s, constructing the clearly defined and elaborate grounds that would come to be New Orleans' first public classical garden. Using a combination of natural landscape, historic architecture, and surreal artwork, the garden was intended to be a place where families from all around New Orleans could enjoy the natural beauty of City Park.
Mid-20th Century: Neglect and decayWith the end of the economic stagnation of the 1930s, and the "war boom" of the 1940s, the WPA program ended and federal funding dried up, leaving the Botanical Garden to largely fend for itself. The period from the 1940s to the early 1980s saw a decline in the quality and cleanliness of the garden. Upkeep was lagging, vandalism was common, and attendance was down; the park had lost the allure that had made it one of the most popular public places in New Orleans.
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New Orleans Botanical Gardens Reviews
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156 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • We came here for the first time for a special event, and I was surprised how peaceful and green this area was - especially at sunset. It hardly felt like we were in the city at all. Nice gardens, refl...  more »
  • Do take time to visit these gardens. It is well worth $8 to see the careful cultivations and water features on display. The photos hopefully will give you the sense of tranquil beauty that rewards the...  more »
Google
  • So pretty! I love walking through here, especially if there's an event and it has a nice set up. Great to go with family or alone. Kid friendly. Plenty of parking. Self guided - as in no tour guide or group (from my experience anyway)
  • Love this botanical garden. Has so much variety of flowers & trees that I never seen before. I am in love with the gardenia trees & Japanese tea garden section. The garden also has this vegetable garden which quite cute. $8 admission is such great deal. So worth it.

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