New England’s Largest Indoor Display Garden…working towards balance.
Built in the year 2007, the Roger Williams Park Botanical Center (RWPBC) is an oasis in the heart of Roger Williams Park. There are over 23,000 square feet of indoor display gardens while outdoor gardens include summer and winter gardens, a rose maze and a newly installed pollinator meadow. To protect the ecosystem the RWPBC practices a no-chemical approach to plant maintenance in the gardens, greenhouses and grounds. In the greenhouses, the Center is a tropical ecosystem including plants, insects, birds, fish, and many other inhabitants working towards a balanced system. Therefore, it is not possible, nor is it a desire, to rid gardens and greenhouses of all pests as that would deter a balanced ecosystem.
How do we work towards a balanced ecosystem?
- The Center monitors and manages pest levels instead of eliminating them to preserve the environment, reduce costs, protect the health of humans and animals, and maintain beneficial organisms such as birds, bees, butterflies, predaceous bugs, and other pollinators.
- One way the Center manages pests is by using biological controls. Biological management is the process of reducing a pest population by using predators, parasites, or disease organisms that ordinarily occur in nature.
- To keep this system in balance and to provide a continuous food source for beneficial insects, some plants that appear to be yellowed, or over-ridden with insects. will occur. These are our trap plants. The trap plants are used to create a continuous supply of pest insect species for our beneficial insects. You might think of them as a beneficial insect restaurant!
- So please, be mindful and appreciative of the important ecosystem inhabitants, both big and small at the RWPBC.