The Botanical Gardens
While the majority of visitors to the Erie Zoo/Gardens come to see the animals, many are surprised and impressed by the numerous gardens throughout the Zoo. Some gardens help create an environment for the animals similar to their natural habitat. Others are special gardens that display certain groups of plants or a particular garden theme.
As you explore the Zoo grounds observing the animals, also take time to appreciate the various gardens and many varieties of plants in bloom throughout the season. Plants can provide not only food, shade and shelter for the animals but their colors, textures and fragrance provide sensory delights for the visitors.
The spring gardens start to come alive with tulips and flowering shrubs and trees. The summer landscape provides brilliant, colorful displays of perennials and annuals. Tropical plants provide yet another layer of drama adding a lush, dramatic feel to the landscape.
In response to visitor requests for identification of various plants in the zoo gardens, the horticultural staff created a guide “Exploring the Gardens by the Numbers”. A printable pdf document is available here that provides common and botanical name information on over 100 plants marked with a number that corresponds to the same number in the guide. (Click your browser’s back button to return to this page.) When visiting the Zoo, copies of this guide are available at the Gift Shop.
In addition to the outside gardens, the Zoo Greenhouse contains numerous tropical plants for you to experience.