This is the world’s only epiphytic-growing cycad known as Zamia pseudoparasitica. This plant originated in Panama. It now grows in Montgomery’s new shade house.
Syagru s cearensis from S. America
Synsepalum msolo – this tree is rarely seen outside of Africa.
“Montgomery Botanical Center is the living legacy of Robert and Nell Montgomery, widely known as the founders of Fairchild Tropical Garden (now Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden). Housed on their 120-acre Coral Gables estate, it included the largest and finest private collections of palms and cycads in the world. As a living tribute to her late husband, in 1959 Nell created The Montgomery Foundation, Inc.—later renamed the Montgomery Botanical Center (MBC)—as an independent, nonprofit institution devoted to advancing the science of tropical botany.
The mission of MBC is to advance science, education, conservation, and horticultural knowledge of tropical plants, emphasizing palms and cycads, and to exemplify excellent botanical garden design. Through this mission, MBC endeavors to make the Montgomery name known and respected throughout the world in the field of plant science.
MBC carries out its mission by collecting seeds from wild populations of palms and cycads from around the world. MBC then germinates these seeds in its nursery and grows the resulting plants in population-based, documented, scientific collections in its extensive garden pursuant to excellent botanical garden design. MBC fosters and participates in scientific research by collecting and maintaining scientific data on its collections, making its collections and scientific data available to scientists for research purposes, and disseminating this research and data through scientific and popular publications. MBC cooperates with many botanical institutions and countries around the world by making its plant collections, knowledge, and expertise available to their scientists, educators, and students. MBC staff also explain the mission and operations to the general public through workshops, lectures, publications, and tours of the plant collections.
MBC’s well-documented, wild-collected, population-based, tropical plant collections are extraordinary in their scientific, educational, and conservation value—and the botanical garden that contains those collections is extraordinary in its design and beauty.
Our Planting Policy
MBC’s plant collections must comply with the following four core principles:
Plants must have scientific, conservation, and/or educational value;
Have a reasonable chance of growing on the property;
Be maintained following exemplary horticultural practices; and
Be incorporated into the collection in an aesthetically pleasing landscape design.”
I was given a tour of MBC by Dr. Chad Husby, Collections Manager and Botanist with a large interest in tropical conifers.
beautiful Ficus on the grounds
This is the seed of the “Double Coconut.” It is the largest seed in the world! It is the Ludocea plant, which takes 8 years to germinate – hypo geo germination. Montgomery has two of these seeds planted currently.
Just some pictures from around the gardens, including the many peacocks who call Montgomery their home – even some babies running around!
red-toned Gumbo Limbo trees
This is the Nypa fruticans “the mangrove palm” collected from Malaysia in 1982 that now lives in Montgomery’s Nypa Lake. This is the saltwater palm. It has a carpel like a leaf and has a fossil record which makes it one of the most primitive plants.