“More than 8,000 plants”
The Climatron® is the first geodesic dome to be used as a conservatory, incorporating the principles of R. Buckminster Fuller, inventor of the geodesic system. It opened to the public on October 1, 1960. The design of the Climatron greenhouse was developed by St. Louis architects Murphy and Mackey, winning the 1961 Reynolds Award, an award for architectural excellence in a structure using aluminum. In 1976 it was named one of the 100 most significant architectural achievements in United States history. The term “Climatron” was coined to emphasize the climate-control technology of the greenhouse dome. The Climatron has no interior support and no columns from floor to ceiling, allowing more light and space per square foot for plants than conventional designs. It rises 70 feet in the center, spans 175 feet in diameter at the base, has 1.3 million cubic feet, and encloses approximately 24,000 square feet (more than half an acre). The interior of the Climatron is designed on a tropical rain forest theme, highlighting their diversity and ecology. Visitors enter and immediately experience the tropics: dense green foliage, a small native hut, sparkling waterfalls, rocky cliffs, a river aquarium with exotic fish, and a bridge from which the forest canopy and associated plants can be viewed.
It's pretty humid in here, which is actually pretty cool, cause it makes you feel like you're in the rainforest.
They have a number of themed gardens and greenhouses, including Victorian English, Chinese and Japanese gardens with themed architecture. Really, really nice and I'm not one who's particularly moved by plants. The Climatron is the crown jewel - a geodesic dome housing a rainforest environment. Named one of the 100 most significant architectural achievements in US history. They had displays of blown glass artwork interspersed throughout sections of the park and the rainforest - really neat stuff. Every path you went down it seems like you could find some hidden gem tucked away and the landscapes were amazing.
This place is huge. Would be a great bike or Segway tour. Walking, I'd guess it takes the better part of a day to really explore everything. Unfortunately, we just had a couple hours before closing and had to hustle to see what we did.
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- Wed: 7:00 am - 7:00 pm
- Sat: 7:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Sun - Tue, Thu, Fri: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
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