Garden Playtime


Introduce your little one to the joys of nature! Join us for hands-on learning and sensory stations that will stimulate your child's interest in the natural world. With a new theme each month and activities that engage the senses and spark creativity, Garden Playtime is an enjoyable and enriching activity for families throughout the spring, summer and fall.

Suggested ages: 6 months - 5 years

Tuesdays, March - October
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

March: Spring Birds

Learn about the amazing diversity of birds by observing them in the Garden and discovering the songs, shapes, and colors that make each one unique. Dig in a birdseed sensory bin, design your own feathery friend with colorful clay, and make a pine cone bird feeder to hang in your yard.

April: Seed to Bloom

Follow the life cycle of flowering plants, from seeds to beautiful blooms. Learn about spring plants you see brightening the Garden and enjoy the magic of watching your own seeds grow at home.

May: Storybook Adventures

Immerse yourself in storybook adventures at stations designed to inspire imagination and creative expression. Be sure to save time to visit some of the stunning living plant sculptures when Imaginary Worlds—Once Upon a Time opens to the public starting May 5th.

June: Garden Fairies and Gnomes

Experience the enchantment of garden fairies and gnomes, whose magical powers and tiny worlds are fun for kids of all ages to explore. Build your own fairy village, then visit the quiet sanctuary of the Gnome Garden perched above the Nest in the Children’s Garden.

July: Mythical Creatures

What do you call a horse with wings or a woman with the body of a fish? Come find out as we indulge in the fascinating array of mythical creatures that inhabit some of the most beloved children’s stories. Connect with some creatures up close when you visit the mermaid, phoenix and other giant living plant sculptures inhabiting the Garden.

August: Wonderful Water

Dive into the wonderful world of water! From streams, rivers and lakes to marshes and oceans, water is what makes our planet unique. Find out what critters and habitats depend on water as you travel its path from mountain to sea, then cool down in the Splash Pad before you head home.

September: Life in the Desert

Learn about one of the world’s most unique habitats and the plants and critters that call the desert home. Observe some of the creative adaptations that help them survive in extreme conditions, then check out some living examples in the Desert House and the Skyline Garden, where towering camel sculptures lumber through the succulent-filled landscape.

October: Fall Fun

This month’s activities are inspired by the harvest season. From delicious food aromas to the crunching sounds of leaves, relax into the nostalgia of autumn as we wind down Garden Playtime for the year. Save some time to hunt around for your favorite Scarecrows in the Garden.