EAST LANSING – The Michigan State Horticulture Gardens are in full bloom.
Located off Bogue Street, the garden expands across 14-acres. The gardens are separated into smaller plots including the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens, landscape arboretum, and perennial and annual gardens.
Jessica Wright is the education coordinator for the Michigan 4-H Children’s Gardens. Wright studied horticulture at Michigan State University. She has been working in the gardens since 2004. She says the upcoming months are full of exciting events.
“We have a digger day on June 29. This is the first year we have this event. The university is going to bring out their big equipment and kids can touch the truck. We’ll have a big dirt pile they can dig in,” said Wright. “We have a water day. We’ll do a Slip ‘N Slide and water balloons.”
Her favorite part of the job is that it’s seasonal. Right now she is working with the butterflies but in two weeks she’ll be helping with the outdoor programming.
“It changes and I love that. I love that it’s different. In the summer I get to do things like bubble day and have tea parties,” said Wright. “It’s not the same thing every day.”
Wright says another exciting part of her job is seeing the way the garden has grown over the years.
The garden will celebrate its 25th anniversary next year. Festive events to honor the garden are already being prepared.
“Everything is going to be bigger and better than what it usually would be for our 25th anniversary,” said Wright.
Pat Merry, a volunteer at the gardens, has been helping out nine of those 25 years. She says the best part is working with the kids.
“I really like seeing lightbulbs go on when you talk to them. They really enjoy being in the outside gardens and the inside gardens.”
Merry says the gardens are a great environment to work in not only for the beautiful landscape but also for the amazing staff.
“Gardeners are all a little crazy but we’re all a lot of fun,” said Merry.
The butterflies will only be around until the end of April but the outdoor gardens are open all summer. With the warm season ahead, it’s the perfect time to explore the MSU Horticulture Gardens.