WRITTEN BY: Heidi Markle
It was an award-winning summer for the Laura Conyers Smith Municipal Rose Garden in Loose Park. In July, the Kansas City Rose Society announced that the garden was one of several to receive the World Federation of Roses Societies Award of Garden Excellence.
Established in 1995, the Award of Garden Excellence recognizes rose gardens around the world that achieve excellence not only in visual beauty, but that possess significance from historical, educational and horticultural perspectives.
Highlighted in the nomination were the many important roles the garden plays for Kansas City residents. Not only does the garden serve as an iconic public space that is open to all, it is a gathering place where people come to celebrate and enjoy nature and the arts and a place for learning, enriching the eyes and minds of those who visit.
The Rose Garden also received the 2018 Club Horticultural Commendation from The Garden Club of America via the Westport Garden Club.
Kansas City’s Municipal Rose Garden is the realization of a dream that began in 1931 by a group of women, led by Laura Conyers Smith, when they established the Kansas City Rose Society and created the public rose garden in Loose Park. The first garden contained 120 rose plants. There are now about 3,000 roses of about 150 varieties in the 1.5-acre garden. In 1965, the garden was officially named the Laura Conyers Smith Municipal Rose Garden. The garden is maintained through a partnership between the Rose Society and KC Parks.
For more information on Kansas City parks, nature centers and gardens, visit kcparks.org.