GARDEN

A woman and her child enjoy the native foliage at St. Croix’s St. George Village Botanical Garden.

The St. George Village Botanical Garden on St. Croix is open and ready to enjoy during this COVID-19 pandemic, a sanctuary for people, plants and wildlife on an increasingly crowded island with plenty of green space to make it easy to stay socially distant.

“We’ve got more than 16.5 acres, so during this horrid time of COVID-19, you can come out and relax and enjoy without worries,” said Director of Events and Rentals Amy Parker DeSorbo.

The garden invites the community to support it by becoming a member during its Membership Melee drive. Membership is $50 per person, $40 for seniors, $75 per couple, $65 for senior couples and $100 for families. Membership includes unlimited free admission to the garden all year except for special event days, advanced notice for all events held at the garden, a 10 percent discount on museum store and nursery purchases, special member rates on some special events, classes and workshops and access to the library by appointment. Reciprocal privileges include free admission at more than 300 botanical gardens across the country. Larger membership packages are also available.

“Our mission statement says it all: conservation, preservation and education. By becoming a member, you help us complete our mission,” DeSorbo said.

One important facet of becoming a member, according to DeSorbo, is introducing the garden to children as part of their heritage and history.

“One thing I really love is to have our island children enjoy the garden,” she said. “In the four years I’ve been here, we’ve seen more than 6,000 children visit. It introduces them to the flora of the island and gives them a chance to fall in love with the garden as their families have for generations. It’s important for the island and I’m very passionate about that.”

DeSorbo is also looking for volunteers in various areas of the garden. Visit www.sgvbg.org for more information.