Nathanael Greene|Close Memorial Parks
2400 S. Scenic, Springfield, MO 65807
(417) 891-1515


November – March:
Monday – Saturday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Sunday 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
April – October:
Monday – Saturday 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.; Sunday 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Gardens and Grounds open sunrise – sunset


Botanical Summer Camps

Ages 7-11
limit 15 students
8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Fee: $75/week regular registration;
$50/week FOG members


Join us at the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center and Gardens for a week-long, 1/2 day camp for children. Each week, campers will explore a special theme about the Garden and learn more about plants, the planet and the way people connect with the environment. Keepsake crafts, field studies, garden games, and botanical snacks are all part of the daily activities.


Staff from the Springfield-Greene County Park Board, University of Missouri Extension of Greene County and volunteers with the Friends of the Garden will  lead the children in a variety of indoor and outdoor experiences.


For more information and a copy of the registration:

2014 Botanical Garden Day Camp Guidelines


2014 Botanical Garden Day Camp Enrollment Form

Registration application and full payment are required to secure your seat. Send to 2400 S. Scenic Ave, Springfield, MO 65807 or call 417-891-1515.


July 7 - 11

The objective for ‘gardening’ week  is to learn about the biology of all the different plants in the garden. Many of the activities will  include hands-on gardening tasks and plant preparation tasks such as herbs for cooking.

  • Flower parts
  • Tree ID
  • Pruning
  • Planting in the garden
  • Weeding
  • Soil profiles; worm bins/compost
  • Sensational Herbology
  • Cuisine
Art in the Garden
July 14 - 18

The objective for ‘arts’ week is to study how plants and gardens inspire many forms of artistic expression. Activities will be heavily craft oriented. Some of the activities will include:
  • Japanese lanterns, martial arts and meditation
  • Papercrete containers
  • Flower arranging
  • Flower pressing and note cards
  • Poetry
  • Music- make a chime
Birds, Bugs and Butterflies
July 21 - 25

The objective to ‘butterfly’ week is to introduce students to the responsibility of raising butterflies and insects and learning how to observe wildlife from afar.

  • Netting and handling butterflies
  • Caterpillar nursery
  • Ricker mounts – pinning and exhibiting insects
  • Prairie walk – seed bombs
  • Creek dip netting
  • Make a terrarium
  • Make a bug mobile – egg cartons
Learn to Build Your Own Watergarden!

Springfield Watergarden Society members will present tips, tricks and things they wish they knew before installing a pond in their backyard. Program includes filtration systems and things to consider to accommodate certain plants and fish. Please RSVP!
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       Adult
Date:    August 16
Time:  1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Fee:        Free


A Love Song for All Life

A fundraiser for the Friends of the Garden's Sensory Garden. Performance at the Springfield Art Museum. Artists include, flautist Bettine Clemen and guitarist Richard Patterson. Oil paintings by Peter Longley in silent auction. Reception included.
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       Adult
Date:    August 21
Time:  6:30 p.m.
Fee:        $45 in advance; $50 at the door


Monarch Tagging
Learn about the Monarch Migration study conducted through Kansas University. Meet outside the Butterfly House to see this demonstration.
Springfield Botanical Gardens at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park 891-1515
Age:       All ages
Date:    Sat. Sept. 26
Time:  2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Fee:        Free


Botanical Garden Drawing Class Series
Learn botanical drawing techniques with Peter Longley. No previous experience necessary. Limited seating! Please RSVP!
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       Adult
Date:    October 8, 15, 22, 29
Time:  10:00 a.m.
Fee:        $10/session


The English Gardens of Sir Winston Churchill, Ann Boleyn, and John Jacob Astor - Chartwell and Hever Castle in Kent

A Photographic presentation with Mr. Peter Longley.
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       16 yrs. and up
Date:    Fri., Oct 24
Time:   6 p.m.
Fee:        Free


Tai Chi with Chuck Mercer

Chuck Mercer will demonstrate and guide participants in the martial art of tai chi.
Springfield Botanical Gardens at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park 891-1515
Age:       16 yrs. and up
Date:    Sat., Oct 25
Time:   10 a.m.
Fee:        $3 admission to the garden


Romance in the Japanese Garden

Take a rare night time stroll through the romantic and beautiful Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden. Enjoy light music and telescopes to gaze at the stars.
Springfield Botanical Gardens at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park 891-1515
Age:      17 yrs. and up
Date:   Sat. - Sun., Oct. 17-18 & Nov. 7-8
Time:  7:30 - 10 p.m.
Fee:       $5/Person (cash only please)



Horticultural Interpreter Peter Longley presents a series of demonstrations on festive entertaining inspired by the gardens and seasons. Longley was the Estate Manager for Tullamaine Castle in Ireland and Cruise Director of the Queen Elizabeth 2, where he orchestrated gourmet dining events and social gatherings. The series showcases appropriate flower arrangements, china, glassware and silverware, with anecdotes and poetic or otherwise appropriate seasonal readings. Includes light refreshments. Registration required. Limited seating! Please RSVP!
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       16 yrs. and up
Date:    Nov. 7: “The Formal Feast”
Time:   Fri., 6 p.m.
Fee:        $10/Session


The Royal Scotsman - A Journey through the Highlands of Scotland from a luxury train. History, Flora & Fauna
A Photographic presentation with Mr. Peter Longley.
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       All ages
Date:    Nov. 14
Time:   Fri., 6 p.m.
Fee:        Free


From Mozart to the Sound of Music - Wildflowers and Mountains from Salzburg,Berchtesgaden and the Bavarian Alps

A Photographic presentation with Mr. Peter Longley.
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       All ages
Date:    Nov. 21
Time:   Fri., 6 p.m.
Fee:        Free


Topiary Tree Workshop
Create a fresh and fragrant living arrangement of your own design using foam oasis and natural ornaments from the garden. This is fun activity to do with co-workers, family and friends. Registration required. Limited seating! Please RSVP!
Botanical Center 891-1515
Age:       10 yrs. and up
Date:    Sat., Dec. 13
Time:   10 a.m.-noon
Fee:        $25 (includes all materials)

 Denotes a youth program

Guided Programs

Available Monday – Thursday, April – October


Paid, guided programs should be scheduled no less than 72 hours in advance. Applications must be submitted to reserve your program. Pre-payment is preferred. If paying day of, group leader should collect all fees prior to the program and submit payment in the gift shop as one transaction. Refunds for cancelled tours can be submitted in writing 5 days prior to the event and are subject to a $10 processing fee.


Horticultural Therapy


Guided Tram Tour:  A guide can drive small groups to key garden locations. 1.5 hr. Fee: $50/per group of 20.


Dr. Bill Roston Native Butterfly House - mid-May-September – Discover the lifecycle of the butterfly from egg to larvae to pupae to adult. Learn about the basic needs of wildlife and the specific plants needed by butterflies for food and to raise their young. 30 min. Fee: $25/per group of 12; add $2/each additional person.

SEEDS and Scavenger Hunt!: Learn more about how plants reproduce and scatter their seeds by wind, water and wildlife. After a 30 min program, students are invited to hunt for seeds around the gardens and share their observations.

Plant Parts and People: Learn more about the plants and plant parts we eat as well as the plants we use to make everything from shoes and baseball bats. Students will be invited to see these plants growing around the gardens.

Gray-Campbell Farmstead

Life in 1860s, especially for 5th grade! Course offered 6 weeks in fall and spring. Guided programs

for other groups are available by appointment. Contact Michelle or  417-725-4921



Self-Guided Programs:

Available Anytime!

Play Trail! - Discover nature by play! Designed to engage rigorous exercise for the body and mind; 5 playgrounds can be found from the butterfly house around Lake Drummond. See plants and nature and follow the activities found at each play pod. Group size: 12 or less. Activity stations include: the butterfly, leaves, trees, pond life and mushrooms. Walking trail length is approximately 1 mile.


Discover and Dial! - The Guide by Cell® audio tour is available anytime, anywhere by calling (417) 213-3016. Create your own self-guided tour by simply dialing the posted prompt as you enter each garden area or discover an interesting feature! Brochures also list the garden areas and prompt #s for more information.  Free! Only costs your minutes!


Arboretum - Many trees have been identified and labeled with added information about the plant. Trees

are marked by 4’ tall paddles. Green labels designate native species, brown labels identify non-native

species. A great resource for plant identification projects!


The Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden - Fee: $3/adult; 12 under free. Guides available for an additional $2/pr. open April-October; 9:00 a.m.- 7:30 p.m. closed Tuesday-Wednesday.


Host Lions Club History Walk – 28 granite markers commemorating historical American figures.

A scavenger hunt can be downloaded from under education or guided tour can be arranged by contacting a Lions Club representative at: 417-833-9879.


South Creek Greenway the Botanical Center is a major trail head for people hiking and biking the 7.5 mile Greenway. Observe wildlife, plantings and different habitats along the creek going both east and west from our central point at Lake Drummond.


Schools and Youth Group Request Form


Adult Group Request Form


Self-guided Youth Activities and The Play Trail!

Butterfly Pod


Download Nature Bingo and print


Download History Walk Hunt and print

In a broader initiative to get kids moving and interacting with our gardens and nature, 5 play pods have been installed along the trail and around Lake Drummond. Smaller groups and families are encouraged to start from the Botanical Center and discover more about Butterflies! Trees! Leaves! Pond Life! And Mushrooms! Interpretive signage accompanies each Playpod, so small lessons can be incorporated in each play experience. Walking distance approximately 1 mile for a full circle.


Download Bird Checklist


Missouri University Extension Service
Regular office hours are: Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. 417-881-8909


Friends of the Garden
Office Hours by appointment: 417-891-1650