The Charlotte Botanical Gardens is a botanical garden located inside the University of North Carolina – Charlotte campus. The garden is a member of the American Public Gardens Association (APGA) and aims to promote interest, education, and conservation of plants to the general public. The Botanical Gardens is composed of three gardens with sixteen collections among them.
The main structure is the McMillian greenhouse, a 4,000 square feet that showcases plants from different climates and environments. It is made up of six themed collections housed in eight separate rooms inside the greenhouse. The Carnivorous Plants area is the only of its kind in Charlotte and features fascinating plants with monstrous appetites. The Venus Flytrap is arguably one of its most well-known citizens. Another is the Sarracenia hybrid, specially bred within the garden.
One of the most visited flowers in the whole garden has got to be the Titan Arum. Growing only in Sumatra, it is considered to have the most massive floral structure in the world. It can reach up to 10 feet in height! People think it lucky if they’re able to catch this flower in full bloom. The plant must first grow for 10-15 years before blooming, which only lasts 1-2 days. After this period, it will go dormant and then flower again in 3-5 year intervals. The Charlotte Botanical Gardens have two Titan Arums on display – one is called “Odie” and the other “Rotney the Magnifiscent.”
Aside from the main greenhouse, there are other garden complexes within the Charlotte Botanical Gardens. One is the Van Landingham Glen, a native woodland used as a living classroom for the university’s botany students. It’s also where UNC Charlotte founder Bonnie Cone is laid to rest. The Susie Harwood Garden, on the other hand, features the more landscaped look of a traditional Carolina garden.