Tulsa Botanic Garden

As part of the design team since day one, Howell & Vancuren continues to develop this premier scenic destination as new gardens launch.

Master Planning assistance, design and construction services of A.R. & Marylouise Floral Terraces and Children’s Discovery Garden, with an Entry Garden now in the works.

Master Plan

Having been involved with the development of the Tulsa Botanic Garden since it’s inception, Howell & Vancuren provided direction and assistance for the initial site selection and evaluation in the master planning effort led by a nationally renowned botanic garden planner. Once the garden site was determined, Howell & Vancuren assisted with the design and construction documents for the 7-acre Centennial Lake, a central feature of the garden.

To facilitate fundraising efforts for future gardens, Howell & Vancuren coordinated the site location and design of a temporary visitor’s center along with a trail around the lake to accommodate visitors and present a glimpse of future gardens on the site. The lakeside walkway was designed to enhance the experience with nature and beauty.

The focus of the garden was revised when a full time Executive Director was hired. A second master plan was undertaken to reflect the vision of the new administration. Through this effort, Howell & Vancuren further developed and refined the lakeside promenade and helped reimagine several of the gardens.

The next phase in development was the A.R. & Marylouise Tandy Floral Terraces and the Children’s Discovery Garden. Howell & Vancuren has been intricately involved in both of the design efforts for these endeavors through participating in all design meetings, as well as input into design and detailing efforts. Howell & Vancuren provided local project representation, construction documents and site observation for both of these gardens.

A.R. & Marylouise Tandy Floral Terraces Garden 

The A.R. & Marylouise Tandy Floral Terraces Garden is based on an Italian hillside garden, sort of a renaissance hillside garden. Howell & Vancuren provided design development, construction documentation, and site observation services for the extensive cascading water feature and unique hardscape attributes. A series of chadars, water basins, and weirs traverses the garden extending approximately 300 linear feet with a fall of approximately 30 feet. The main feature, along with two adjoining smaller runnels, all terminate in the Centennial Lake, which is the water source for the system. Excavated rock from the site was used to build four retaining walls that climb up the site and six terraces boasting more than 300 different types of plants, brush, and trees that surrounded them. 

Children's Discovery Garden 

Howell & Vancuren provided landscape architectural services for this unique and fun Children’s Discovery Garden. Working alongside 3 Fromme Design, this garden is a place for kids of all ages to explore and discover the beauty of plants and the environment. Located on the northwest bank of Centennial Lake, it utilizes the natural topography to create a carefully designed stream valley water feature set in a woodland environment with terrestrial and aquatic plants. A whimsical focal element, the Spring Giant is a large themed grotto that not only anchors the garden but is the source for the stream below. The design team carefully located every site element and used special construction techniques to preserve the existing topography as well as most native planting to create a unique garden within the Osage Hills of Oklahoma.

Entry Garden

This project entails about 8-acres extending from the site's entry to the future visitors’ center site and will provide an attractive first-impression and a precursor for various venues within the garden proper. A new entry road with views to Centennial Lake, parking for 280 cars, pedestrian circulation routes and amenities, enhancement of an existing entry pond, addition of a fountain and a stream feature, extensive landscaping and site lighting are all part of the project. Project design has been completed through the design development phase to allow for accurate cost estimation and fund-raising. Timing for construction of the project has yet to be determined.

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