Garden Closed

Due to the closure of the U.S. Capitol Campus to the public, the U.S. Botanic Garden continues to have altered operations.  Bartholdi Fountain and Gardens and the Terrace Gardens are open while the Conservatory and gated outdoor gardens are temporarily closed. Please monitor www.USBG.gov for updates on operating status. Many resources can be accessed online, including educational materials, virtual tours, and online programs. Connect with resources from home at www.USBG.gov/AtHome.

White-birds-in-a-nest

White-birds-in-a-nest (Macbridea alba)
Plant Botanical Name: 
Macbridea alba

Macbridea alba is found only in northwest Florida and southeast Alabama, mostly within the Apalachicola National Forest. It usually blooms from May to July, with flowers that inspired its common name, "white birds-in-a-nest." The charming small clusters of white buds and blossoms resemble eggs and little birds' heads in a nest. This rare species prefers wet areas within grassy habitat on poorly drained, infertile soils. Macbridea alba shares the same habitat with two other Florida endangered species, Scutellaria floridana (Florida skullcap) and Stachydeoma graveolens (mock pennyroyal). Destruction of habitat for agriculture and development, suppression of fire and use of chemical herbicides has greatly threatened these plants. Macbridea alba is pollinated only by bumblebees, whose populations are also diminishing, thus increasing the decline.