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Sunken Gardens

Sunken Gardens features an annual floral display that consists of over 30,000 individual annual plants which are redesigned to a different theme each year. The theme for this year is "Moon River".

As the only Nebraska garden listed in the “300 Best Gardens to Visit in the United States and Canada” by National Geographic Guide to Public Gardens, this is a special place to many.  Located at 27th and Capital Parkway, this 1.5 acre lot was first developed in 1930 and most recently renovated in 2004.  Visitors can tiptoe through the tulips every spring and watch the thousands of annuals bloom all summer long and then enjoy the peaceful winter interest of the varied trees and shrubs.

If you would like to reserve the gardens for a wedding or other special event, please contact the reservation staff at 402-441-7847, opt 0. You can see if you would like to see if a specific date is available, check out the online reservation system.

Sunken Gardens continues to grow thanks to generous donations from people inspired by its beauty.  There are several ways to support Sunken Gardens including purchasing a Paving the Path brick or One Flower Forever. For information on other ways to contribute to the Sunken Gardens endowment fund, call 402-441-8258.

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Garden Features

Healing Garden

The Healing Garden (or White Garden) is located in the upper level on the west side.  The design was inspired by the famous White Garden at Sissinghurst Castle in Kent, England created in the 1930’s by Vita Sackville West and Harold Nicholson.  The gathering of white blossoms inspires calm, serenity and meditation.  Visitors are encouraged to experience the ethereal quality of the garden on moonlit summer evenings.

 

Perennial Garden

Perennials are located throughout Sunken Gardens but are featured in the upper level on the north side.  There you will find varieties of shade loving plants including hostas, viburnum and hydrangeas.

 

Annual Garden
Thousands of annuals are planted, many by volunteers, corresponding to a different theme each spring.  Primarily serving as design inspiration, garden themes have included Tropicalismo, Van Gogh’s “Starry Night”, Hachimaki – a stylized Japanese headband, "Power of the Peacock", "Purple Haze" and "Solar Flair."

 

Volunteer Events

For information regarding, the Hamann Garden Spring Clean up, the Garden Gab program and Put the Beds to Bed, please contact the Public Garden Section Volunteer Coordinator Zac Halley, email- zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov

Hamann Rose Garden Spring Clean-Up

Date: Saturday, April 4, 2020
Location: Hamann Rose Gardens, 27th Street & Capitol Parkway
Time: 1 - 4 pm
Contact: Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov, (402) 326-9045

Volunteers are encouraged to participate in “Learn and Do” rose garden spring maintenance program. Rose Garden Demonstrations will include:

  • Proper spring pruning of Hybrid Tea Rose and Miniature Rose bushes.
  • Rose Garden maintenance techniques are discussed and shown for season long care.
  • Tools of the trade and their maintenance techniques.

Wake up the Beds

Date: Saturday, May 16, 2020
Location: Sunken Gardens, 27th Street & Capitol Parkway
Time: 8:30 am - until finished
Contact: Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov , (402) 326-9045

Wake Up the Beds is an annual event that invites the public to help install annual plants in the Sunken Gardens. This event takes place in Mid - May after the last frost free date. This is appropriate for both individuals and groups. Volunteers are asked to bring a trowel, gloves and clothing appropriate for gardening. This event is limited to the first 60 volunteers who call.
Please register with Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov Or call at 402-326-9045, by May 4th.

Garden Gab at Sunken Gardens

Date: May 19, 2020 - October 2020
Days: Tuesdays and Thursdays (weather permitting)
Location: Sunken Gardens main entrance Pavilion, South 26th and D Streets
Time: 9am - 12pm
Contact: Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov, (402) 326-9045

These are weekly "Learn and Do" sessions with the Public Gardens staff which cover different weekly topics on the growing culture of plants used in our gardens. Following the sessions, the newly learned skills are then put to use at Sunken Gardens, Hamann Rose Garden and the Rotary Strolling Garden. Those attending are encouraged to wear proper garden clothing which should include gloves, knee pads and other personal safety equipment. All garden tools are provided.

Garden Docents

Date: June 2 - October 2020
Days: Flexible schedules
Location: Sunken Gardens, Hamann Rose Garden, Rotary Strolling Garden.
Contact: Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov
, (402) 326-9045

Volunteers are needed to provide information and lead guided tour groups through Sunken Gardens, Hamann Rose Garden and Rotary Strolling Garden. Docent training is available. Please contact the Public Garden Section Volunteer Coordinator Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov for additional information.

Garden Docents Training Meeting

Date: June 2 at 8:00 a.m.
Location: Sunken Gardens Pavilion
Contact: Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov
, (402) 326-9045

Please RSVP if interested at zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov. Volunteers are needed to provide information and lead guided tour groups through Sunken Gardens, Hamann Rose Garden and Rotary Strolling Garden. Docent training is available. Please contact the Public Garden Section Volunteer Coordinator Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov for additional information.

Put the Beds to Bed

Date: Saturday November 7, 2020
Location: Sunken Gardens, 27th Street & Capitol Parkway
Time: 8:30 am - until finished
Contact: Zac Halley, zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov, (402) 326-9045

Put the Beds to Bed is an annual event that invites the public to participate in preparing the Sunken Garden annual flower beds for six [6] long winter months. After last seasons annual plants have been removed, volunteers will hand spade the soil and apply a fresh layer of compost. Please register with Zac Halley at zhalley@lincoln.ne.gov or call 402-326-9045.

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