Quad City Botanical Center

About Quad City Botanical Center

Opening on June 20, 1998, the Quad City Botanical Centeris a 501 c 3, non-profit organization dedicated to bringing people and plants together in fun and meaningful ways. Adjacent to the Mississippi River in downtown Rock Island, IL, the Quad City Botanical Center is comprised of an indoor tropical atrium, a spacious banquet room, a physically enabling garden, a G-Scale garden train exhibit(seasonal), other thriving outdoor gardens, an educational greenhouse, a three-season event canopy, resource library, and gift shop.

As a public garden we maintain hundreds of plants ranging from tropical varieties to regional zone five perennials. A garden for all season, our tropical atrium is splendid throughout the winter months, and our rare conifer collection is unique to the Quad Cities. In spring, flowering bulbs enliven the garden, including a stunning iris collection. Other special collections include day lillies, mums and ornamental grasses. Our outdoor butterfly garden attracts pollinators by the hundreds, and is lively from early spring to late fall when the Monarchs start their migration.

The Center is open to the public 360 days a year, and serves the public in a myriad of ways. As an educational resource we offer staff guided tours of our gardens, grounds and greenhouse, serving 10,000 students annually. In addition, we participate in outreach programs at school campuses, and set up educational booths at various community expositions and special events. Our Helpenstell Resource Center has hundreds of garden and environmental books, and our expert staff is on-hand to answer questions and help interpret the garden and exhibits.

As a banquet facility we serve thousands of customers throughout the year, before, during, and after business hours - affinity groups, service clubs, businesses and corporations, brides, birthdays and anniversaries, and class reunions are all celebrated within our gardens.

In addition to housing living collections of plants that grow and thrive throughout the many countries of the world, we, as a cultural venue, host many special events and programs throughout each year, providing a wide range of entertainment and tying back to the many gifts of the plant world. From the Garden Party to the Pumpkin Extravaganza, there is an event for everyone during our calendar year. Additionally, we support local artists and artisans, providing gallery space to exhibit works of art from various mediums, and a gift shop that showcases and sells many one-of-a-kind handcrafted items. Our travel club arranges day trips throughout the tri state area, visiting gardens and venues of horticultural, environmental and historical interest. Inbound motor coach visitors are treated to specialty tours featuring lectures, tours, and samples.


education intern

May 2023 - August 2023 Rock Island, IL
“I felt like this was the safest and most inclusive environment I've ever worked in, the entire summer I was excited to start my shift. I had so much freedom to create curriculum material and to teach to multivarious age groups. Honestly though, one of my most favorite parts was handling the butterflies and tadpoles throughout the summer and watching them metamorphose. ”

Education Intern

June 2018 - August 2018 Rock Island, IL
“I enjoyed learning from Greg Wolf, the education director, about the many aspects of natural science in connection with education. ”
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