The Tulsa Botanic Garden has received a major gift to build a new half-acre Liberty Garden on the existing peninsula located on the east side of the Garden’s seven-acre lake.

The Stanford family has given the lead gift to fund the Liberty Garden which is adjacent to the previously announced Bumgarner Family Lotus Pool and will be built in conjunction with it.

“The progress the Botanic Garden has made since its inception is very impressive,” said Mike Stanford. “The design for the existing peninsula will be a great addition for the Botanic Garden and fulfill our desire for a patriotic theme. We look forward to seeing this new Garden addition enjoyed by visitors from our community and beyond.”

The Stanford Family Liberty Garden’s focal point will be an American flag flown from a flagpole and plinth located on the south end of a large rectangular lawn. The flag plinth will include decorative masonry and perforated metal panels which will glow at night as if they were lanterns. 

Visitors will enter the garden by taking the Rosalie and Lindsay Alexander Deco Bridge. A grove of trees will outline the entry of the Liberty Garden which will be marked by ornate ironwork gates. Once inside, the view will expand to the 3,000 sq. ft. Taylor Alan Gravender Lawn surrounded by walkways. Outlining the walkways on west and east sides will be flower borders, benches, and layers of evergreens, shrubs and trees to create an intimate space with views of the lake and beyond.  

Opposite the flagpole on the east and west edges of the garden will be 20’ by 20’ pavilions with artisan ironwork railings framing views of the lake and creating an arbor for flowering vines. Past the Flagpole Terrace, a progression of wide “seating stairs” drop to the water’s edge and present a panoramic view of the lake and Oklahoma sky. 

“We are extremely grateful to the Stanford family for their wonderful gift and vision for this patriotic garden. The Liberty Garden will be a great addition to the continuing growth of the Tulsa Botanic Garden,” commented Garden CEO Chuck Lamson.

In September 2020 the Garden announced a lead gift to fund the Bumgarner Family Lotus Pool with plans to break ground in early 2021. Rising costs and supply limitations due to the pandemic slowed the project.  

Tulsa Botanic Garden: Liberty Garden Perspective

In September 2021, work began on a 50-year storm water diversion project required before construction of the gardens could begin. Work on that $350,000 infrastructure project was recently completed. 

The Garden worked with landscape architects from 3.Fromme Design (Sanford, FL), Howell & Vancuren and Wallace Design Collective. Manhattan Construction Company and JONESPLAN, LLC will be constructing both gardens. 

Groundbreaking is scheduled for March 2. An estimated timeline for completion of the Liberty Garden is 10 months with the Lotus Pool projected to be completed in mid-2023. Cost of the Liberty Garden is approximately $4,000,000.