My Big Backyard

Welcome to My Big Backyard!

Welcome to My Big Backyard! This family garden is a place for jumping, splashing, digging, creating, daydreaming, discovering, and simply enjoying time spent outdoors. Sixteen different themed areas provide opportunities for playing in nature.

Enter Home Sweet Home to learn about the important roles that plants play in our homes. Seedling Circle offers exploration activities for our smallest sprouts. You can run, jump, play yard games, and follow our stepping stones on the Leaping Lawn and get a bird’s eye view of the garden in Treetop Adventure as you learn about our feathered friends. Use nature’s toy box to build forts, have a puppet show, and make natural works of art in Nature Play. Weave your way through a Decomposition Maze of leaf litter critters, wiggle like a worm through larger-than-life Wormville tunnels, and then become a star on the Backyard Bluff stage as you create rhythms on the marimbas, drums, and bells. Enjoy five whimsical, artistic play spaces along Playhouse Lane, before exploring the bog plants in the Pond Out Back and a shaded swing in Conifer Corner. Experience the buzz of pollination in the wild garden space of Welcome Wildlife and splash through Raindrop Stop and Critter Creek. The Guest House and surrounding My Little Garden provides a wonderful place to rest and learn with restrooms and a seasonal lemonade stand located here.

A Note to the Big Kids:
The most meaningful learning takes place when a caregiver and child experience the wonders of the natural world together. Spend time discovering alongside your child asking questions to encourage observation…I wonder why that bee is visiting that flower? What does that plant smell like? We hope that you will be inspired by what you see to create opportunities in your own backyard for children to build and strengthen their connections with the natural world.

Idea Garden: Alice's Garden

Our Idea Garden is a garden space designed to inspire outdoor play & provide ideas for creating child-friendly garden spaces in our visitor's own homes. The space features rotating themes.

Beginning May 8, 2022, the space features Alice's Garden sponsored by The Little Garden Club, where children can meet the flowers, paint the roses red, and join in an imaginary tea party as you create your own wonderland in My Big Backyard.

A special thanks to The Little Garden Club of Memphis for being instrumental in creating and supporting My Big Backyard.

FAQs

This is a garden for all ages! From toddlers to adults there is something for everyone. Unique art and plantings will inspire adults while kids will enjoy exploring and playing in all of the different themes areas.

Please try to keep little feet out of the flower beds. There are lots of places to run and play, but our flower beds are where our plants are working hard to grow. Please do not pick the flowers so that everyone gets a chance to see them. Pick up after you play. There are lots of fun things to play with while you’re visiting, but please put these back where you found them so others can play and enjoy them too.

Raindrop Stop provides a “rain shower” for running through to cool off in the summer heat. It is open May 1- October 31.

Our water features are designed as a place to splash and play but not for swimming. Appropriate clothing and shoes are required.

No. If you purchase fish food, that is only to be used to feed the fish in the Japanese Garden.

Two family restrooms are located on the porch of our Guest House.

There are family-use only picnic tables located in Home Sweet Home at the entry of My Big Backyard and also next to the Guest House. Out of consideration of our other guests, groups wishing to picnic must do so in the Hardwood Picnic Grove on the Great Lawn or another suitable location in the Garden.

No. All birthday parties in the Garden must be scheduled in advance. The fees cover the cost of your program and help raise funds to help support educational programming throughout the year. All birthday parties and special events in My Big Backyard are by reservation only. Out of consideration of our other guests, groups wishing to picnic must do so in the Hardwood Picnic Grove on the Great Lawn or another suitable location in the Garden.

Group visits to My Big Backyard are by reservation only. This garden was designed for family experiences and small group classes…not for the large groups that often visit for our Youth Education programs. Any group of 10 or more children (schools, day cares, scout troops, churches, etc.) must be registered for one of our classes to visit this area. Otherwise, these groups can enjoy touring the rest of our 96-acre garden. Visit our Youth Education and Field Trips page for more information on available programming.

Yes! We always need volunteers at the Garden both in My Big Backyard and throughout our 96 acres. Visit our Volunteer page for more information.

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