NOTE: Water, including restrooms, temporarily unavailable in Susan Garver Family Discovery Garden. Use facilities in Welcome Pavilion.
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The Stories Plants Tell

BUDBURST, A COMMUNITY SCIENCE PROJECT

Plants tell stories, without saying a single word. Picture a cherry tree in full bloom; big blackberries bursting with flavor; orange, red, and yellow leaves on a deciduous tree; or bare branches covered in snow. What do those images bring to mind? If you thought spring, summer, fall, and winter, you understood the story told by just the sight of those plants, without hearing anything.

 
Plant phenology is the study of the stories that plants tell, and those stories are changing because of climate change. Spring temperatures are arriving, on average, three days earlier than they used to. That may not sound like a big deal, but it has an impact on pollinators and other wildlife, and ultimately our food supply. Flowers that bloom too early can be missed by the pollinators that rely on them, and the early blooms are vulnerable to frost damage, which leads to a decrease in food production.
The Stories Plants Tell
The Stories Plants Tell

Fortunately, scientists are working on a solution to this problem, and they need people in the community to gather important data to help them. That’s where you come in. Budburst is a community science project where researchers, educators, and community scientists – like you, and other Garden volunteers – work together to answer critical ecological questions by studying the timing of seasonal change in plants. All you need to do is pick a plant and record its phenophase on the Budburst desktop or mobile app.

 

The Houston Botanic Garden is a partner in Budburst, and we’d love for you to join us and contribute important scientific data to fight the effects of climate change. In addition to downloading and using the Budburst app in the outdoor spaces around your home and workplace, there will be opportunities for volunteers to come and record observations at the Garden. To learn more about how you can help, email education@hbg.org.
Our Mission

Enriching life through discovery, education, and the conservation of plants and the natural environment.

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DAILY
9:00 am — 5:00 pm

Garden Entrance
One Botanic Lane
Houston, TX 77017
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8205 N. Bayou Drive
Houston, TX 77017

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