Award Winning Exhibit of LEGO brick sculptures, a butterfly, a hummingbird, insects, lily pads, and more!
9 a.m. – 5 p.m. with extended summer hours on Thursday nights till 9 p.m. at Flowers After 5
A big bumblebee weighing 60 pounds; a dramatic dragonfly with a three-and-a-half-foot wingspan; and a soaring seven-foot-tall red rose: these are just a few of the sculptures on display at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden May 27 – September 18, 2016, as part of Nature Connects®: Art with LEGO® Bricks. Created with half-a-million LEGO bricks, the award-winning exhibit by New York artist Sean Kenney will feature 27 sculptures in 14 displays throughout the Garden (view a map PDF). Cost is included in regular Garden admission.
Exhibit and related activities, exhibits and demos included with Garden admission
$11 seniors 55+
$8 Children (age 3-12)
Free for Children under 3
Free for Garden Members
Tickets are available at the Garden 9 a.m to 5 p.m daily, and can be bought at the door. You can also purchase tickets online (or by phone 1-800-594-TIXX). Please note: online & phone sales require 24 hours for processing and convenience fees apply.
Many of the sculptures are larger than life and highlight the interconnectivity of all living things. For example, an oversized hummingbird and flower demonstrate concepts of co-evolution. A centerpiece sculpture of an Eastern tiger swallowtail butterfly, built from 37,000 LEGO pieces, draws attention to protecting the habitat of Virginia’s State Insect. There’s even a chance for guests to be part of the exhibit with a photo opportunity built into a mosaic of a garden scene. Fittingly, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s passion is connecting people and plants to improve our community.
The 14 displays include (number of LEGO bricks used appear in parentheses): Bison and Calf
Mother Bison (45,143)
The bison on the prairies of this nation’s heartland were almost eliminated when this unique prairie ecosystem was altered. It takes hundreds of years to create the rare ecosystem found in natural prairies.
Plants and pollinators have a unique connection. Insects collect nectar, while at the same time, provide pollination for the plant. This relationship is essential for both insect and plant to survive.
Acorn Seedling (15,581)
Plants serve as one of the essential links in nearly all ecosystems. Plants provide food, shelter and breathable air that link all living things by being the “root” of nearly all food chains.
Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly
Butterfly Survey Networks have been established in many U.S. states to watch and count butterfly populations. Harmful changes in an ecosystem can be first detected by counting these easy to identify and fragile insect species.
Common Green Darner Dragonfly
Water is a finite resource. It has been around forever and changes form, but we cannot create more of it. The water that showered dinosaurs is the same water that dragonflies use today to breed in and drink. Water is one of the most important resources for us to safeguard as it continuously recycles itself on our planet.
Fox and Rabbit
These two animals represent a perfect example of how a balanced ecosystem works. Rabbits provide food for the fox, and the fox keeps rabbit populations at optimum levels to preserve their shared habitat.
For centuries, people have been breeding plants to meet specific environmental or cosmetic needs, such as creating roses that are resistant to disease.
One of the most diverse plant families on Earth is the orchid family. Each orchid has specific attributes of shape, color, size, patterns and more, which allow it to thrive in its unique ecosystem.
Many unique, fragile and important ecosystems survive in our national, state and local parks and reserves. Maintaining these habitats protects the important connections of all organisms within an ecosystem. The next time you’re tending or mowing your lawn, imagine what used to be growing and living there 200 years earlier.
Hummingbird and Flower
Beyond close and long-term interaction between different species, numerous connections are often stronger. Many species co-evolved, seen here by the shape of the tube-shaped trumpet flower which matches the long, narrow beak of a hummingbird.
(5 goldfinches; 575 each)
Communication is one way animals stay connected. Communication through bird calls can be between individuals of the same species or even across species. The goldfinch continues to learn songs into adulthood and can recognize its mate by its particular tune.
Because humans are on the top of the food chain, our activities have deep rooted and often permanent impacts on our planet. Individual effort, whether through the preservation of wild lands or the simple act of responsibly tending a garden, makes a significant impact on nature.
Water Platter and Koi
Lily Pad (5 lily pads: 10,598 each)
Lily Bloom (1,675)
Jumping Koi (1,937)
An ecosystem is defined by all living and non-living objects in an area. Each ecosystem is as diverse as all the items found within it, from forest to ocean to mountain to desert, and particularly fresh water lakes and ponds.
Photo-Op Cut Out
Guests can be part of the exhibit. This mosaic cut out allows people to photograph themselves as part of the display.
Build Opportunities: Mosaic Building with LEGO Pieces
Daily, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. in the Lora M. Robins Library
Build Opportunity: Good Green Fun with LEGO Bricks
June – August, Fridays and Saturdays; 10 a.m. – noon in the Children’s Garden
Family Walk & Talks
Drop in program, each Tuesday at 10 a.m. Limited space available, meet in the Robins Visitor Center.
#LEGOutside Instagram Contest
We’ve been inspired by Nature Connects®: Art with LEGO® Bricks and are celebrating all things LEGO bricks! Share your favorite photos inspired America’s favorite connecting bricks or our Nature Connects exhibit, tag your photos #LEGOutside and you’ll be entered to win a prize package.