Native and exotic tropical plants can be purchased by nature lovers exploring the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden Saturday and Sunday during the garden’s annual GardenFest and Green Market.
Visitors can browse and buy a wide variety of plants, palms and orchids as well as healthy-living products and earth-based arts and crafts. Other attractions are to include live music, exhibits by conservation-oriented nonprofit organizations and educational presentations. Those attending can enjoy lunch at an on-site beer garden with food vendors.
Seminars include a Speaker Series presentation at 10 a.m. Saturday. During the “Wings Over Florida Bird and Butterfly Field Trip” through the garden, participants might earn their ruby-throated hummingbird certificate or zebra longwing butterfly certificate with birding trail coordinator Whitney Gray and supervisor Anne Glick. Following the field trip at 1:30 p.m. is a talk titled “The Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail” by Andy Wraithmell, a wildlife information specialist with the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission.
Rich in biodiversity, the 15-acre garden features two wetland habitats, national and state champion trees, a one-acre butterfly habitat, seasonal flowers, resident and migratory birds, a waterfall wall of tropical plants and much more. The property also contains two of the last remaining natural freshwater ponds in the Florida Keys.
Eight self-guided tours are offered, enabling visitors to discover different areas and aspects of the locale and its tropical environment.
Admission is free. The event is set for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days at the garden at 5210 College Road on Stock Island.