Good things are brewing at the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum (KBGA). Knoxville’s breweries and distilleries are partnering with the KBGA to create a Green Drinks Garden that will educate visitors about the agriculture of alcohol. After nearly a year of fundraising, the KBGA is planning to bring out the golden shovels for a groundbreaking ceremony on Saturday, March 23.
The Green Drinks Garden will showcase plants that have been grown around the world to brew, distill, and infuse mankind’s favorite beverages. Attractive interpretive plant labels will provide information about the culture and history of each specimen. The idea for the garden was inspired by members of Green Drinks Knoxville during a staff led presentation in 2017.
“In May 2017, we held our monthly meeting at the gardens and Amanda [a KBGA staff member] passionately spoke about the history of agriculture used in alcohol,” states Green Drinks leader Ariel Allen. “This inspired several more conversations about building an educational garden to share that history with other visitors. Green Drinks helps bring people together to have this conversations, and in the case of the Green Drinks Garden, turn conversations into a greener reality.”
Knoxville distillery PostModern Spirits, breweries Blackhorse Brewery, Crafty Bastard Brewery, Elkmont Exchange, Geezers Brewery, Last Days of Autumn, Schulz Brau Brewing, and related sponsors Eagle Distributing, SoKno Taco Cantina, West Hills Flats and Taps, and Grayson Subaru partnered with the KBGA to raise funds to purchase plants and materials for the Green Drinks Garden.
“We are honored to partner with Knoxville’s breweries and distilleries to raise the funds for this exciting new garden,” said Executive Director Jim Richards. “We hope the Green Drinks Garden will educate our visitors not only about the agriculture of alcohol, but also how this important industry is growing in Knoxville.”
Fundraising for the Green Drinks Garden is ongoing. Crafty Bastard Brewing has created a Groundbreaking Brew for a fundraiser for KBGA at the brewery on Saturday, March 23. The KBGA will host its inaugural Knoxville Botanical Brewbilee festival on Saturday, April 27. The Brewbilee will be a botanical beer festival that will showcase Knoxville’s breweries and distilleries. To learn more about upcoming Green Drinks fundraisers, visit www.knoxgarden.org/greendrinks.