The Missouri Botanical Garden has become an essential stop on every St. Louisan's holiday agenda. This dome-shaped conservatory located in the Botanical Heights neighborhood glows during the month of December. That's probably why they call it Garden Glow.
This annual Christmas light display was launched in 2012 and is now one of the most popular things to do in town. The glowing lights that illuminate the geodesic dome beckon people of all ages during the holidays. Learn about what's inside, when to visit, and other Christmas events held at the Missouri Botanical Garden.
Dates & Admission
The Garden Glow display opens in mid-November and closes in early January. This year, it's open from November 17, 2019, through January 1, 2020. Hours are from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., with the last entry of the night at 9 p.m. Garden Glow is open on Thanksgiving, but closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. General admission is $18 for adults, $14 for Garden members, $10 for children ages three to 12, and $6 for children of Garden members. There are also some bargain nights (Sunday through Thursday, November 18 to December 14, 2019) which offer $2 off admission for adults. On Family Nights, children get in for $3 and adults get $2 off admission.
One million twinkling lights bring this botanical garden to life. They cover the Climatron (the dome), the Kaeser Memorial Maze (a labyrinth made from hedges), and other popular exhibits around the estate. You'll find the lawn covered with magical glowing bulbs and rainbow colors reflecting off the ponds. Every year is a little bit different, which keeps the locals coming back time and again. Walk through the display first, then head over to Tower Grove House to see a Victorian Candlelight Christmas display. There will be live music, food, festive drinks (like hot chocolate), shopping, and outdoor fire pits (with s'mores).
Other Holiday Events at the Garden
Garden Glow isn't the only Christmas display at the Missouri Botanical Garden. There's also the Gardenland Express Holiday Flower and Train Show, where mini locomotives make their way through heartwarming holiday scenes. You can view all 900 feet of the Gardenland Express' track between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily. It's included in the price of admission for Garden Glow.
Visitors can also see Garden founder Henry Shaw's house decked out for the holidays during the Garden's daytime hours. Tower Grove House is open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be storytelling for children on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 11 a.m., and Sundays at 1 p.m. Tours of Tower Grove House are included with the price of Garden admission.
For those who want to take home a bit of Garden beauty with them, there's the Holiday Wreath Auction. Local floral designers display dozens of holiday wreaths at the Ridgway Center, where visitors can bid on them through a silent auction. The money raised goes to the Garden and its outreach programs. For more information on any of these holiday events, see the Missouri Botanical Garden website.