Last summer I learned about the Beanstalk Children’s Garden in Swope Park and arranged for my moms group to make a visit so we could check it out. We didn’t make it until August when it was brutally hot, but there were tons of fruits and veggies and all kinds of plants to learn about from our tour guide. This is a really special and unique place to visit and unlike some gardens, it is really kid friendly (thus the name). Here’s what you should know and how you can go about setting up your own tour!
What it is: Part of the Kansas City Community Gardens, the Leanna Flandermeyer Beanstalk Children’s Garden is a unique garden where children and adults can come to learn about growing food, how insects play an important role in gardening, nutrition, and plant science. All of the plants are labeled so you can do a self-guided tour. There are several sections in the garden including: vegetables, fruits, herbs, seeds and grains, the curiosity garden and a beautiful water garden. Admission to the garden is free!
When you can visit: The garden is open mid-June through mid-October (opens on June 13 this year but dates vary each year so check their website!) They are open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. -5 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m.
Guided Tours: These cost $2 per person and can be scheduled via phone or email (check their website for the details). They last about 45 minutes, and you’ll get a tour of the different parts of the garden from a knowledgeable tour guide who will let you touch and taste the plants. On our tour we tasted raspberries, spearmint and cherry tomatoes, but this varies based on what is in season and ripe. At the end of the tour, the kids even get to plant a flower to take home!
Special Events: The Fall Family Festival is Saturday, Sept. 17 this year and has a lot to offer families. Last year there was face painting, arts and crafts, horseback rides, veggies and herbs from the garden to taste, and the Kansas City Public Library gave away free books!
I’m so glad we discovered and explored this hidden gem in Swope Park. The Beanstalk Children’s Garden makes for a great family outing, visit with your moms group, scout troop, or homeschooling group, and no two visits will be the same since the plants in the garden will vary throughout the season!