Each year since 1925 the main room, called “The Sunken Garden”, of the conservatory is filled with poinsettias, azaleas, and other festive plants during the Holiday season . Thousands of people come to visit, and to step into a tropical oasis while the snow flies outside. The statue at the end of the gazing pond is always surrounded by koi, and this time was no exception.
Como Park includes the Como Zoo, the Como Park Conservatory (renamed Marjorie McNeely Conservatory), and the surrounding 300 acres of parkland. The Conservatory originally opened in 1915, and has had several facelifts during its lifetime. It houses thousands of plants, many of them decades, if not centuries old. It is on the National Register of Historic Places, and is open 365 days of the year.
The Como Park Conservatory holds 7 indoor and 3 outdoor gardens, including the Palm Dome, which is 64 feet tall and holds more than 150 species of tropical palms and cycads. Orchids and Bromeliads fill in the nooks and crannies.
The North Garden is my favorite, which holds plants from all over the world, a pond and the gateway to the outdoor Japanese Garden. The plants in the North Garden are mainly those that supply food, spices and medicines for us!
The newest garden in the Conservatory was finished just a few years ago, and is called the "Tropical Encounters". It houses both plants and animals, and has lots of child friendly learning centers. The sloth in the pictures below hangs out for everyone to see.
Como Park and Conservatory Information:
1225 Estabrook Drive
Saint Paul, MN 55103
24-hour Information: 651-487-8200
Opening times - All year. Daily. Open 10am to 6pm, April thru September, 10am to 4pm October to March.
Admission - Free
Website - Como Park Zoo and Conservatory