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Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Plant lovers to celebrate beginning of spring at annual festival

<p>J.R. Trimm, 16, of Bronson, loads plants to his box truck at the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens on Thursday afternoon. This weekend is the Spring Festival at the gardens, located at 4700 SW 58th Drive.</p>

J.R. Trimm, 16, of Bronson, loads plants to his box truck at the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens on Thursday afternoon. This weekend is the Spring Festival at the gardens, located at 4700 SW 58th Drive.

Local gardeners and green thumbs can find a place for their passions to bloom at the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens this weekend.

Plant fans are gathering to celebrate the 23rd annual Spring Garden Festival on Saturday and Sunday at the gardens, located at 4700 SW 58th Drive.

“The event is really the celebration of the start of spring,” said Alexis Caffrey, director of Kanapaha Gardens. “It’s one of the major horticultural events here in Alachua County.”

The two-day event will feature about 200 booths selling plants, garden-related materials and food, Caffrey said.

For entertainment, the park will include a live auction, a butterfly conservatory and local music.

This year’s theme is “Passalong Plants,” which are plants that friends and family may grow and share with each other, Caffrey said.

“We thought it was a very fitting theme, considering the fact that most of the plants when we first started here at the gardens were passed along,” she said. “Things that people either outgrew ... or just plants that people had extra of.”

Caffrey said about 7,000 people attended last year’s event and expects that same number this weekend.

Admission into the event will be $8 for adults and $5 for children. Members of the gardens will receive a $2 discount.

Alicia Bernard, a 20-year-old UF family, youth and community services sophomore, said she doesn’t plan on going to the festival, but she believes children will get a lot from the event.

“They like to learn and are open to new experiences,” she said. “I think that they would enjoy it.”

J.R. Trimm, 16, of Bronson, loads plants to his box truck at the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens on Thursday afternoon. This weekend is the Spring Festival at the gardens, located at 4700 SW 58th Drive.

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