Downing Children's Garden
Experience the magic of childhood as you enter under the iridescent rainbow of Botanica’s Downing Children’s Garden. Follow the yellow-stem path of the Rainbow Trail. Wind your way up to Sunflower Plaza Fountain. Discover the Monster Woods and jump over, or maybe in, the Salamander Stream.
Made possible by a donation from Paula and Barry Downing, the Downing Children’s Garden is an enchanting place for kids and kids at heart. Reflective of our Kansas roots and landscape, more than one acre of themed areas host youth programming and family activities. Young and old alike are delighted with one-of-a-kind encounters and breathtaking views from Granny Jean’s Treehouse. Stay a while or skip on through...the Downing Children’s Garden welcomes you!
More details about the Downing Children's Garden
Art installations woven throughout the Downing Children’s Garden are fully interactive. The following artists contributed their work: Rich Bergen, Terry Corbett, April Dodson, Connie Ernatt, Greg Johnson, Andy Newbrey, Gary Price, Gino Salerno, Conrad Snider and Dustin Sypher.
The Magnifiers installation, created by Brady Hatter, consists of four magnifying posts on the very east side of the Downing Children's Garden near the Monster Woods. At each post, hold any object, such as a bug or a leaf, under the glass and see it magnified up to 3 times its size! Brady even added real bugs to the bottom so that there is always something to see, come check it out!
Have a seat in the Spider Pods inside Spider’s Lair! Created by local artist Connie Ernatt, this bronze spider and hand woven spider webs are an interactive display. The spider web pods were welded by local artist Brady Hatter and woven with twine by local artist Karen Cox. This is the perfect spot for kids to play and pretend to be a baby spider or a fly in a trap!
Check out the I Spy viewer in Downing Children’s Garden, high up in the Monster Woods Treehouse. There are also several polychrome bronze creatures in the riverbed, in sight of the I Spy treehouse station. The frog and crawdad were created by local artist Connie Ernatt. The box turtle, butterfly, dragonflies and cicada were created by local artist Karen Cox.
Follow the Yellow Stem Path of the Rainbow Trail and wind your way up to Sunflower Plaza Fountain in the heart of Downing Children’s Garden. A big thank you to Rachel Downs and her team for creating this welcoming, golden walkway along Rainbow Trail. Come visit your favorite features and see what’s growing at Botanica Wichita!
Our team of designers and artists are working hard to add more magic to the gardens, as we speak! Stay tuned for updates!