Dear Friends of the Gardens,
Our recent inclusion in the list of the "Top 10 Gardens in North America Worth Traveling For" by the Canadian Garden Tourism Conference confirms what we have already known to be true: a visit to the Vallarta Botanical Gardens is a world-class experience. Crunching the numbers, we’ve confirmed a hunch that until now we couldn’t easily quantify: with an entry fee of only 60 pesos per person, a visit to the VBG is an unparalleled value!
Summertime is our most popular season for year-round Vallarta residents and their families. With our cool mountain breezes and refreshing swimming opportunities along the Rio Los Horcones, we’re a great place to “beat the heat” when it warms up in the lower elevations. Just check the water level first; a big rainstorm can turn this peaceful river into a whitewater torrent overnight! In that case, hiking along the banks can provide some thrilling views until the river settles back down again.
The forest has come to life once again since the season’s first rains earlier this month and the gardens’ jungle trails are radiant with fresh greenery and flowers to revel in. One particular plant that may catch your attention during this season is the Tillandsia ionanthia. A member of the bromeliad a.k.a pineapple family, tillandsias include Spanish Moss (tillandsia usneoides) which ranges from the southeastern United States to Argentina. The T. ionanthia, especially its Mexican variety, is a much showier plant with leaves that become bright red before their deep purple flowers emerge. These flowers are also a popular hummingbird attractant found throughout the Gardens.
Without the direct government funding that many of the other “Top 10 Gardens in North America Worth Traveling For” receive, we thank our members and donors for allowing us to continue our mission, “to create Mexico’s foremost botanical garden for the discovery, study, propagation, conservation and display of native and exotic plants for the enjoyment of Puerto Vallarta’s residents and our visitors.”
To those of you in Puerto Vallarta, please come up to the mountains and visit us soon; to those of you in other places, we’re well worth the travel!
From the Gardens,
Bob Price, Curator and Founder
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