The United States Botanic Garden has been around for a very long time, as evidenced by the fact that George Washington himself came up with the idea. He knew how important it was to preserve his young country's environment, and he wanted to keep a slice of it safe forever at a national botanic garden. So in 1820, the first United State Botanic Garden opened.
Now nearly two centuries later, its lush gardens continue to beckon to tourists and DC residents alike—after all, admission is always free, so you can visit time and time again. When you do, don't miss the famous Rose Garden, filled with the indescribable aroma of hundreds of vibrant flowers. Enjoy the local native plants in the Regional Garden and meet the critters living in the Butterfly Garden. Other areas to see include the Rain Garden, the Terrace Gardens, and the First Ladies Water Garden.