KEY WEST, Florida Keys — Five flourishing private Key West gardens are to be on display for nature enthusiasts to explore Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24-25, during once-a-year tours presented by the Key West Garden Club.
Set for 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. both days, the exclusive tours give attendees a rare chance to discover examples of distinctive landscaping and plant-filled outdoor living areas central to the island’s easygoing, nature-oriented lifestyle.
Featured gardens, all within a 10-minute walking distance from each other in the Midtown West area, were chosen to spotlight their unusual designs, plants and unique landscaping. Locations are 1316 Laird St., 1402 Laird St., 1407 Rose St., 1610 Patricia St. and 1525 Atlantic Blvd.
Garden Club docents are to be on hand at each stop, sharing detailed information with tour participants about the plants on display. Each day educational presentations on various aspects of horticulture are to be offered at 11 a.m. at 1316 Laird St., 1 p.m. at 1525 Atlantic Blvd. and 2 p.m. at 1610 Patricia St.
Tickets for the tours are $30 per person in advance and can be purchased at keywestgardenclub.com or $35 on tour days at designated garden locations. Tickets are good for both days.
The not-for-profit club is headquartered at Key West’s Civil War–era West Martello fort, located overlooking the Atlantic Ocean at 1100 Atlantic Blvd. Since the 1950s the organization has maintained and planted a lush large-scale garden in the ruins of the fort, with all plants donated and cared for by club members and volunteers.
The fort’s brick arches provide the backdrop for elements including spectacular orchids and bromeliads, mature fruit trees, indigenous plants, a colorful butterfly garden, a white perfume garden, a prehistoric garden and a dramatic pool and fountain.
The site is open free of charge from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily except major holidays.
The tours provide exclusive views of the island's lush backyard living spaces.
Private gardens are chosen for their unusual designs, plants and unique landscaping.