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Facts about the OKC Zoo Botanical Garden

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       Where's the Botanical Garden, you ask? The entire Zoo is an accredited botanical garden. Please read the facts below to learn more.

       Currently, you can see a special array of tropical plant species from Australia to India as well as native plants in the Global Plaza. This lush display sets the tone for a jungle-like Zoo experience.


  • The Zoo promotes plant education, research and collection development.

  • In 1998, the Zoo received AAM Accreditation as both a living museum and botanical garden.

  • The Zoo includes more than 30,000 specimens of flowering bulbs such as tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, crocus, narcissus, iris and ornamental onions every spring.

  • The Zoo hosts the largest, walk-through outdoor Butterfly Garden in Oklahoma, encompassing 21,000 square feet.

  • The Zoo grows unusual and hard-to-find plants for display on grounds and in exhibits, including many unusual trees such as hardy eucalyptus, Chinese parasol trees and alligator junipers. Other unusual plants on display include species from North America, Australia, Asia, Africa and South America. The Zoo is also home to many oak species that are remnants of the ancient cross-timbers.

  • The Zoo is home to many designated horticultural displays and collections. Identification plaques and labels distinguish significant plants throughout Zoo grounds.

  • The Zoo includes more than 100 Oklahoma native species, 29 of which are listed as imperiled or rare.

  • The Zoo contains one of Oklahoma's largest collections of hardy bamboo.

  • The Zoo includes a large display of naturalized and fragrant spring and summer flowering bulbs, including many antique varieties.

  • Enrichment and dietary supplements for Zoo animals are grown in the Zoo’s browse garden and include many vegetables, herbs and a variety of tropicals, such as banana plants and sugar cane.

  • The Zoo planted more than 100 trees in the Oklahoma Trails exhibit for the 2007 Tree Banks Foundations’ Centennial Tree Grove program, celebrating 100 years of Oklahoma statehood.  Most of the plants were obtained from Oklahoma-based plant nurseries or grown at the Zoo.

  • The Oklahoma Trails exhibit contains more than 70 different plant species, totaling approximately 4,000 trees, shrubs, grasses and perennials.

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The Zoo is a fully accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and the American Association of Museums (AAM) as both a living museum and a botanical garden. AZA accredited facilities are dedicated to providing excellent care for their plants and animals, a great experience for guests and a better future for all living things.

A New Breath of Fresh Air: As of Nov. 1, 2007, state law prohibits smoking inside zoological parks. Please help us abide by this law by refraining from smoking within the Zoo. Thank you for maintaining a smoke-free environment for all living things!