In 2009, National Public Gardens Day began as a way to celebrate the nation’s public gardens and “to raise awareness of the important role botanical gardens and arboreta play in promoting environmental stewardship, plant and water conservation, green spaces, and education in communities nationwide,” according to the American Public Gardens Association.
This year, Lili`uokalani Gardens will participate in the national event for the first time with clean up activities and specialized tours organized by Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens. With the direction of the County Parks and Recreation Department, clean up and painting projects are planned for Friday May 9 from 8 a.m. to noon.
The East Hawaii Master Gardeners Association is participating in the event along with Friends of Lili`uokalani Gardens.
Other public gardens in Hawaii County include the Pana`ewa Rainforest Zoo, the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden in Onomea, and the Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden in Captain Cook.
Mayor Billy Kenoi recognizes the importance of public gardens.
In Captain Cook, The Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden is joining in National Public Parks Day. According to manager Peter Van Dyke, “Mayor Kenoi’s proclamation urges us to celebrate and enjoy our public gardens. Mention National Public Gardens Day on May 9 at the garden and you will get in free! Come back on Saturday, May 10, and join community members and visitors in a Volunteer Garden Clean-Up work day. The work day lasts from 9:30 to noon. Bring a lunch and stay for the 1:00 pm tour.”