A surge of hues, scents and melodies filled the atmosphere surrounding Kanapaha Botanical Gardens March 21 and 22, in celebration of its 24th annual Spring Garden Festival.
Thousands were welcomed in, families and horticulturalists alike, to purchase auctioned plants, decorative garden pieces, eclectic trinkets and food from the more than 20 food trucks, all while strolling to the rhythm of live music.
Vividly hued orchids, Bromeliads, African Violets, shrubs and trees, Bonsais, Air Plants, herbs and every blossom and branch in between lined the paths in over 50 booths, all provided by regional nurseries and farms. All plants were available for purchase.
Unique crafts, handmade wooden pieces, unusual garden accessories, intricate stones, jewelry and art pieces were also available.
“We’re trying to help build the economy, based on history related to botany,” said Jim Notestein, operator of Notestein’s Nursery, which used to be one of the only farms in Gainesville.
Notestein is a self-proclaimed “original father” to the festival and had only good things to say about the gardens he helped create some 40 years ago.
Beyond gardening and landscaping, there were social booths drawing awareness for environmental societies and causes in the area.
When they weren’t climbing trees or running around the grounds, children enjoyed digging their hands into the craft section of the festival.
The 24th annual Spring Garden Festival was a colorful display of what local farmers and nurseries have to offer this spring.