Cypress Gardens – Moncks Corner, South Carolina
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Azaleas bloom along a sun-dappled path at Cypress Gardens, located near Moncks Corner in Berkeley County. Cypress Gardens was created in 1909 by Benjamin Rufus Kitteredge on the original rice fields of Dean Hall Plantation. Today, the walking paths through the gardens follow the tops of the dikes. Kittredge opened the gardens to the public in 1932.
Cypress Gardens showcases the unique natural environment of the South Carolina Lowcountry. Below is a photo of cypress knees, or the knobby, woody formations that grow vertically from the cypress tree’s (Taxodium distichum) root system. Scientists still do not know the purpose of knees but suspect they might have multiple uses as a sort of “snorkle,” bringing oxygen to submerged roots, and to anchor the massive trees during storms or even acting as a hedge during such events. While the functions of knees are only hypotheses, their mysterious beauty is synonymous with a cypress swamp.
170 acres of gardens and swamps are so evocative of South Carolina’s timeless beauty that the property has been used as a set for over 15 movies, including The Patriot, Cold Mountain, The Notebook, and not surprisingly, Swamp Thing.
The above photo is of a foam bridge that was used as a prop in The Patriot. Visitors to Cypress Gardens can have fun trying to locate the many props that were left in tact after filming.
Every day except major holidays, visitors can walk along trails which wind through lush gardens or paddle flat-bottomed boats into the swamp for a close-up view of the cypress and tupelo trees, birds, turtles, and sometimes even alligators. To make a day of it, there’s also a Butterfly House, a Swamparium with live exhibits of fish, amphibians, and reptiles native to the swamp, and a gift shop.
Following the historic floods in October of 2015, Cypress Gardens suffered extensive damage, forcing the popular landmark to close temporarily. Repairs to features such as the walking trails, boat landing, visitors center, and beloved butterfly house are necessary before the park can reopen. Cypress Gardens hopes to once again welcome visitors in April of 2018.
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Cypress Gardens Info
Address: 3030 Cypress Gardens Road, Moncks Corner, SC 29461
GPS Coordinates: 33.053782,-79.943603
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The purpose of the South Carolina Picture Project is to celebrate the beauty of the Palmetto State and create a permanent digital repository for our cultural landmarks and natural landscapes. We invite you to add additional pictures (paintings, photos, etc) of Cypress Gardens, and we also invite you to add info, history, stories, and travel tips. Together, we hope to build one of the best and most loved SC resources in the world!