Sign up to our newsletter:

Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

United States of America - Florida - Coral Gables

Institution Code: FTG

International Agenda Registration: Y
BGCI Member: Y

Fairchild's rainforest waterfall
Fairchild's rainforest waterfall

About the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden is dedicated to exploring, explaining and conserving the world of tropical plants.

It is one of the premier research and education-based gardens in the world and a recognized international leader in conservation. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden's palm and cycad collections are part of the North American Plant Collections Consortium of the American Public Gardens Association (APGA). FTBG has an education program reaching some 50,000 school children per year; hosts popular events like the International Mango, Chocolate and Orchid Festivals, the Ramble, concerts, affiliated plant society shows and sales and more; and, is a not-for-profit organization relying on the support of its 40,000 members and benefactors.

Main Address:
Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
10901 Old Cutler Road
Coral Gables
Florida 33156 United States of America

Telephone: (305) 667-1651
Fax: (305) 667-6930
Primary Email:

Staff Details

  • Director's Name: Dr. Carl Lewis, Director
    Curator's Name: Joyce Maschinski, Conservation Ecologist/Team Leader, Center for Tropical Plant Conservation
    Plant Records Officer's Name: Marilyn Griffiths, Plant Records Manager
  • Total Staff:
    Horticultural Staff Number: 25
    Educational Staff Number: 16
    Research Staff Number: 20
    Administration Staff Number: 3

About the Garden

  • Institution Type: Botanic Garden
  • Status
  • Status: Private: Y
    Status: Educational: Y
    Status: Satellite: Y
  • Date founded: 1938
  • Physical Data
  • Natural Vegetation Area: Y
    Natural vegetation area: Size: 2 Hectares
  • Landscaped Area: Y
    Landscaped Area: Size: 31 Hectares
  • Total Area: 33 Hectares
    Latitude: 25.6759820
    Longitude: -80.2758850
    Annual Rainfall: 1525 mm
    Altitude: 0.00 Metres
  • Additional Locations
  • Satellite Garden Names: Fairchild Farm at Williams Grove

Features and Facilities

  • Herbarium: Y
    Herbarium: Number of Specimens: 150000
    Arboretum: Y
  • Micropropagation/ Tissue Culture Facilities: N
    Seed Bank: Y
    Published Plant Catalogue: Y
    Computer Plant Record System: Y
  • Open to public: Y
    Friends society: Y
    Retail Outlet: Shop: Y
    Retail Outlet: Plant Sales: Y
    Disabled access: Y
  • Number of Visitors: 200000
    Number of Volunteers: 350

Plant Collections

  • Accession Number: 10719
    Cultivation Taxa Num: 4092
  • Special Collections:Arecaceae (palms), cycads, Bromeliaceae, Araceae,tropical flowering ornamentals (trees, shrubs, and vines), plants of Madagascar, Caribbean flora, bamboos, mango, avocado, jackfruit. Ex situ collections for endangered species of Florida, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
  • Invasive Species Monitoring: Y
    Invasive Species Policy: Y
    Plant Collection Policy: Y

Conservation Programmes

  • Conservation Programme: Y
    Medicinal Plant Programme: N
    Ex Situ Conservation Programme: Y
    Reintroduction Programme: Y

Research Programmes

  • Conservation - Biology: Y
    Conservation - Genetics: Y
    Data Management Systems and Information Technology: Y
    Ecology: Y
    Ecosystem Conservation: Y
    Education: Y
    Ethnobotany: Y
    Exploration: Y
    Floristics: Y
    Invasive Species Biology and Control: Y
    Molecular Genetics: Y
    Pollination Biology: Y
    Restoration Ecology: Y
    Seed/Spore Biology: Y
    Sustainability: N
    Pharmacology: N
    Agriculture: Y
    Land Restoration: Y

Education Programmes

  • Visitor/Education Centre: Y
    Education Signs in Garden: Y
    Public Lectures/Talks: Y
    Education Booklets/Leaflets: Y
    Guided Tours: Y
    Permanent Public Displays: Y
    Special Exhibitions: Y
    Courses for School Children: Y
    Courses for University/College Students: Y
    Courses for General Public: Y
    Education Programme: Y

The Fairchild challenge

Supporting and encouraging motivated young people towards:
•    Active learning
•    Environmental stewardship
•    Building connections with professionals in the field
•    Innovative career pathway

This year’s Fairchild Challenge started: 24th August 2013        Anticipated end date: 30th June 2014


 © Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

The Fairchild Challenge is a unique school-based environmental education program whereby students are engaged and actively involved in environmental education and stewardship, beginning in elementary school and continuing through college. The guiding principals of the Challenge are to ensure that these young people are given the opportunity to be active learners using real-life experiences, to explore and create independently and to connect with people in the field (either young careers professionals or seasoned veterans).
There are two objectives:

  1. to support the development of environmentally-aware and motivated students who will become solution-oriented stewards of the environment;
  2. to offer students with an interest and aptitude for biological sciences a complete pathway to a career in this field.

  © Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden



The programme is a free, interdisciplinary competition that is aligned with state and national educational standards and is embedded into the local public education system. Through the programme, students actively learn, explore and devise creative and effective responses to some of the most pressing environmental issues of our time. With competitions in various disciplines, the annual menu of options uses the environment as an integrating context for learning.
Contest options, called challenges, allow students to engage in the following projects: research, debate and devise solutions to environmental issues; create environmentally themed artwork; work in and with their community to raise environmental awareness; learn from their elders; conduct habitat restoration at schools; implement green initiatives at home, school and in the community; creatively write about nature; and work with professionals throughout the region to explore science careers.

 © Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden



Through repeated exposure to highly experiential and inquiry-based environmental education from an early age, the Fairchild Challenge influences and empowers a diverse new generation of scientists, researchers, educated voters, policy makers, and environmentally-minded citizens. Promoting the Challenge programme through schools maximizes youth involvement and weaves attention to nature into the daily lives of young people, regardless of age, race, religion, socio-economic status, or ability.  

In response to the local success of the Fairchild Challenge, Fairchild has begun to offer the program as a replicable model to other cities throughout the United States and abroad. The eagerness with which dozens of national and international sites have taken up this offer reflects the programme's resonance in diverse social settings.
The goal of the Fairchild Challenge  National  Movement  is  to  build  the  environmental  education  capacity  and  impact  of  the  Fairchild Challenge programme by defining, capturing, celebrating and showcasing best practices of the Miami-model and currently active sites.
Fairchild also partners with Botanic Gardens Conservation International to host a Global Challenge in which students from all over the world can participate in one specific challenge and compete internationally.

Visit for more information about the Fairchild Challenge and this year’s Global Challenge opportunity.


Amy Padolf, Director of Education at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

Funded through corporate and foundation support

Partnered with Botanic Gardens Conservation International