Citrus Maxima

Madrid’s Botanical Garden

When I woke up on Friday, little did I know that it was International Museum Day. Around 3 p.m. I checked twitter to find a million messages lauding various cultural events around Spain; after perusing the museum offerings, I reorganized my afternoon to include a jaunt through Madrid’s Jardín Botánico. After several cold and rainy weeks, I reasoned that it was too nice of a spring day to stay inside.

I knew that the gardens were directly opposite the Prado Museum, and, while I’d never visited, my curiosity had recently been piqued by an article about the greenery on Lauren’s blog. Do check out the entry to hear her experience as well as practical information on visiting the gardens throughout the year.

Before entering, the first thing I noticed was the scent of all things floral

Once inside, the names made me chuckle

Speaking of names, get ready to put on your Latin thinking cap (Trachelospermum Jasminoides, anyone?)

The garden also has a statue which honors Carl Linnaeus, the Father of Botany

There were trees bearing fruits in their pre-picked stages: caqui, kiwi, grapefruit, hazelnut, etc.

By the way, didya know that grapefruit’s binomial name is “citrus maxima?”

Besides showcasing roses and citrus fruits, the garden functions as the backdrop of a temporary art exhibit.

Paeonia lactiflora

If you’re in Madrid for more than a few days and like green spaces, exotic scents, and dappled paths, add the botanical gardens to your sightseeing list. Everyone from green thumbs to lucky bamboo assassins can find something to enjoy in this expansive park.

One further tip: improve your visit by brushing up on plants on the Plantas del Mes section of the garden’s website before you go.