Bayou Gardens Open House

February 17, 2018
bgohfb From 1935-1956, Bayou Gardens was a must see horticultural attraction on the northshore of Lake Ponchartrain. Now the headquarters of the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges, the gardens are maintained by volunteers and showcase an impressive variety of camellias and azaleas. Join us to celebrate the historic garden with FREE garden tours, camellia growing tips, workshops, arts and crafts, and more! Explore the historic gardens on your own or with a guided tour. Enjoy free refreshments provided by the Friends of Louisiana Wildlife Refuges.

Open House from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Download an event program at this link. (372 KB PDF)


All tours begin at the Visitor Center entrance. 
History Tours at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. 
Camellia Tours at 10 a.m.,12:30, 3 p.m.
Join garden experts, Rangers, and volunteer guides on a one-hour stroll of Bayou Lacombe Center’s grounds and gardens to explore the site’s history or identify some of the camellias on the property.

Talks and Workshops

Talks and Workshops meet inside the Conservation Room.

10:30 - Noon “Butterflies from Scratch Join Dr. Charles Allen, native plant expert, retired LSU professor, and co-author of several books on the native plants of Louisiana to discover what garden plants provide nectar and homes to native butterflies. This workshop will explore plants and planting techniques that can be used in garden landscapes to provide both beauty for the gardener, and habitat for butterflies and other pollinators. *This workshop is made possible by the generous support of the Friends of Louisiana Wildlife Refuges and the St. Tammany Master Gardeners.

1 p.m. “Queen of the Winter Hunter Charbonnet, President of the Northshore Camellia Club will explore the various species of camellias that make a winter landscape bloom. Question and answer session about camellias to follow talk.


Flower Arts and Crafts: Make a waxed camellia (11 a.m. – 3 p.m.). Create a solar print of a plant, or make a upcycled crafty butterfly or pollinator (9 a.m. – 4 p.m.). At the Visitor Center.

View Camellia Displays and Ask an Expert: Bring your gardening or camellia questions to the St. Tammany Parish LSU/Ag Agent and camellia growing experts. In the Conservation Room, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Butterfly Demonstration Garden: The flowers may be “sleeping” but the St. Tammany Master Gardeners will be at the garden to share information about how you can garden for pollinators. Gardeners present from 11:30 – 3.

Bayou Lacombe Visitor Center: Explore displays and discover the eight refuges that make up the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges Complex. Open 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Bayou Gardens Open House is brought to you by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Friends of Louisiana Wildlife Refuges, the St. Tammany Master Gardeners, the New Orleans and the Northshore Camellia Clubs.