My love for plants grew a lot this year. Not only I doubled the plants in my home but I got passionate about visiting botanical gardens. It all began one summer day when I went to one of the two botanical gardens in my city. It was so peaceful, green and interesting that I asked myself - why don’t I start visiting the botanical gardens in the cities I visit? And I did. Here are the 5 gardens I visited in 2017.
Botanical garden of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria
The larger botanical garden in Sofia is a part of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and has inherited the Royal Botanical Garden, founded more than 100 years ago in the center of Sofia. The present location of the garden is between Boyana and Dragalevtsi neighbourhoods. Although there are parts of the garden that consist of vast empty fields that haven’t been utilized, there is the beautiful rose garden and greenhouses that have one of the richest collections of tropical and subtropical plants on the Balkans. There are also many interesting plants for sale in the greenhouses at decent prices.
M. M. Hryshko National Botanical Garden, Kiev, Ukraine
The national botanical garden in Kiev is huge - you can spend hours wandering there as it covers 160 hectares. There are different zones like Ukrainian Carpathians, Crimea, Caucasus, Altai and Western Siberia, Far East, etc. which feature typical plants as well as recreated geography and landscape. Unfortunately, the greenhouses were closed for maintenance and there were no lilacs blooming when I was visiting (in August) but I really enjoyed the “Garden of Eden” orangery - an artificially created tropical garden with waterfalls, rare reptiles, birds and interesting trees.
Botanical Garden of the Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovakia
Located close to the Old Town in Bratislava, the Botanical garden is worth being added to your sightseeings list when visiting the city. The garden is very well maintained, beautiful and peaceful. The greenhouses feature many cacti, tropical and subtropical plants. But the outside part is even more interesting - there is a rose garden, a Japanese garden, ponds, a lake and many more. If you get hungry there is a buffet with some typical Slovakian snacks and drinks.
University Botanical Garden, Balchik, Bulgaria
The botanical garden along the seashore in Balchik is part of Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” and was joined with the Balchik Palace in an architectural and park complex. The Palace complex consists of a chapel, a number of residential villas, a wine cellar, a monastery, a holy spring and many other building as well as a park that has become a botanical garden. There are many exotic trees, a cacti and suculents exposition as well as an outdoor collection of winter-resistant cacti. The view of the garden and the sea is breathtaking.
University Botanical Garden, Sofia, Bulgaria
The second botanical garden in Sofia is also part of Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” and is located in the center of the city. The garden features orangeries, a greek garden, a rose garden, a butterfly pavilion and many more. The outdoor area is really beautiful although I visited it in winter and there weren’t many plants.