The Rufous Hummingbird is a migratory hummingbird who has one of the largest roaming territory of any North American hummingbird species. Stretching as far north as Alaska as far south as the Yucatan and as far east as Florida. Aside from having one of the largest migration patterns per body length this species of hummingbird is known for being one of the most aggressive species. Despite their 3 inch frame they will often attack and chase down other hummingbirds, when feeding from a flower, even larger species up to twice their weight. Reports say they have even been seen chasing back chipmunks if they came to close to their nests.
In 2015, Norma and Larry Ellis drove down from Ashburn, VA to bring Bok Tower Gardens a very special donation. Mr. Ellis’ great grandfather is Horace Burrell who, along with son Edward, was the builder for the Singing Tower. The donation included the Burrells‘ two handwritten journals detailing the construction of the Tower, a scrapbook, and several hundred photographs.
Using the information and photographs from the Burrell Collection, we have created a new traveling exhibit called Creating an Icon: The Way We Worked on the Singing Tower. The exhibit shares some of the details contained within the journals and helps to shed new light on the Singing Tower and those who worked so hard to create it. Creating an Icon was partially sponsored by the Florida Humanities Council and Visit Central Florida, and is on display here in the Visitors Center now through January 18, 2018, after which it will travel to other locations around central Florida and beyond.
We hope that you will come by and check out the exhibit, but even if you’re unable to visit in person, you can still view the Burrell Collection! The collection has been digitized and the journals, scrapbook, and a selection of photographs are now available online.
Looking for volunteer hours?
Become a Bok Tower Gardens Teen Ambassador
Bok Ambassadors are students from 13 to 18 years-old who have been accepted into this internship program and serve as volunteer educators.
Why Become a Bok Ambassador?
- share a sense of community through fun and engaging experiences with peers.
- forge new friendships, and spend time outdoors exploring and sharing nature with others.
- become more self-confident through leadership development and teambuilding.
- gain a deeper knowledge of the natural sciences and themselves.
- become eligible for a paid summer internship.
When do Teen Ambassadors meet?
once a month after school on Thursdays 3:30-4:30 pm and also commit to volunteering one day a month
Interested teens and their parents will meet for an orientation session (January 6 at 11:00 a.m. or January 7 at 2 p.m.).
Come join us for Habitat Improvement days for the rare Lakela’s Mint in Fort Pierce!
First Friday of each month: November through April (except January)
The public is invited to help improve Scrub habitat for the rare Lakela’s Mint on the morning of Friday, February 2nd. We will be removing the overgrowth of small oaks, love vine, life plant, and various other competing species within the natural population of mints. Loppers and pruners will be provided, but if you have a favorite hand tool, please bring it. No special skills are necessary, and all ages are welcome. We will provide a short tour of the habitat and its species afterwards for those who are interested. Lunch (sandwich platters) will be provided at noon.
Date: Friday, February 2nd
Time: 8:30 am – 12:00 pm
Place: The Ocean Discovery Center parking lot at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute/FAU, 5600 U.S. 1 North, Fort Pierce, FL 34946
Bring: bottle of water – refills will be provided. Also if desired: hat, sunscreen, bug spray, gloves. PLEASE wear long pants and sturdy shoes or boots.
RSVP: All participants must RSVP in advance with Cheryl Peterson, Conservation Program Manager, Bok Tower Gardens firstname.lastname@example.org / 863-734-1220
Amanda Thompson, Sr. Lands Stewardship & Outreach Coordinator, St. Lucie County Environmental Resources
Department ThompsonAm@stlucieco.org / (772)462-2528
All participants will also be required to sign a liability waiver at the start of the work day.
We hope you can join us! Your help is greatly appreciated! Please pass this message on to other interested parties who may be able to help out.
In the aftermath of a hurricane, we typically think of flooding, destruction, and humanitarian disasters. Most of us don’t think about rare plants. . . most of us, that is. After Hurricane Irma, Highlands Hammock State Park invited Bok Tower Gardens to rescue epiphytic ferns and orchids from fallen trees in the park before cleanup crews incinerated the debris.
On June 19th, Mike Ball and Phil Gonsiska conducted an endangered plant rescue at a site slated for development near Clermont. The site was a ten-acre, slightly overgrown scrub remnant. Penny Cople, of Breedlove, Dennis, and Associates, Inc., showed them to several scrub plums (Prunus geniculata).