Sunday, December 21, 2014
McKee Botanical Gardens
Located in Vero Beach, Florida, the McKee Botanical Gardens are 18 acres of tropical gardens along the Indian River. They were begun in 1929, when landscape architect, William Lyman Phillips, designed the basic infrastructure of streams, ponds, and trails. Native vegetation and ornamental plants were added with the goal of establishing an impressive collection of water lilies and orchids.
It flourished throughout the 1940s, but by the 1970s, competition from other Florida attractions caused it to close its doors. Sixty of the original acres were sold. The remaining acres sat vacant for twenty years. Then in 1994, the Indian River Land Trust purchased the property and restored the garden. It was reopened in 2001. There are now several buildings on the property, including a gift shop, education center, and restaurant.
The gardens are open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM, and Sunday noon to 5:00 PM. Admission for adults is $10.00, and for children, $8.00.