Eco-Detectives at Work

Three 5th grade classes from Liberty Baptist Academy visited Heathcote on January 21 for a special field trip titled Eco-Detectives: Habitats.  Educator Nan Nan Billings taught them what habitats are and what kinds are found on the Treasure Coast.  The students worked in groups to make a visual presentation to teach what they learned to others. They also enjoyed a tour of the Gardens.

Liberty Baptist 1

Would you like to bring a group to Heathcote for one of Miss Nan’s unique learning adventures? She can also present her topics onsite at your facility. To find out more, contact Miss Nan at or 772-812-1682.


Homeschoolers Hop In

Heathcote hosted the Homeschool Hoppers as part of a collaborative field trip series. The Ox-Bow Center, Savannas Preserve State Park, Smithsonian Marine Station, and the Manatee Observation and Education Center are other stops on this journey of learning.

The theme for this series is “Decomposers and Scavengers: Nature’s Recyclers.” At Heathcote Miss Nan led the Hoppers on a search for some of those recyclers. Kids spied earthworms, lichen, and more as they looked up, down, and through plants, compost, and leaf litter.

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To learn more about Miss Nan’s educational field trips, please call her at 772-812-1682 or email her at

“Pond Appeal” Class

Are you interested in learning about the birds, mammals, and other critters that visit your backyard pond? Do those blue pickerel weed flowers and other plants in the pond attract wildlife? Would you like to participate in the Florida Landscapes for Wildlife Program?

Join Ken Gioeli, Extension Agent with the UF/IFAS St. Lucie County Cooperative Extension, to learn about how ponds and landscaping can benefit wildlife.

 November 14 at 10:30 AM at Heathcote Botanical Gardens.

FREE for HEATHCOTE MEMBERS and $6 for non-members.

Seating is limited, so please register by calling 464-4672.

Small Pioneers Learn About Olden Days

First graders from Morningside Academy visited Heathcote on October 27 for our Pioneer Day experience. Educator Nan Billings started out with a lesson in the Pioneer House. Hands-on activities from bygone days followed outside.

The children shook cream to make delicious butter. They learned how to knead dough and cut out biscuits. They scrubbed on a washboard and hung clothes on a line with wooden pins. After the chores, they had some pioneer fun with square dancing.




If you’d like information about booking one of Miss Nan’s curriculum-based field trips to Heathcote, just give her a call at 772-812-1682, or email her at

Attract Birds and Butterflies

Learn about native shrubs that have berries for birds, branching for nesting and blooms for specific butterflies!  Learn how to create a backyard habitat with groups of native shrubs. Visit some of these shrubs that have been growing for years in Heathcote’s Butterfly habitat.

Presented by Ann Maria Loveridge, President of the Florida Native Plant Society, Lakela’s Mint Chapter

Saturday, October 17th, 9:30-11:00
$20 for Heathcote members/ $25 non members

Call to reserve at 772-464-4672

Everyone will take home a Native shrub to start or add to their collection and receive lots of information on where to purchase native plants locally.

Caladium Workshop

Saturday August 22nd 10:00-11:30AM.  The HOTTER The BETTER!  Learn about the history and horticulture of these spectacular heat-loving tuberous plants.  Participants will plant and take home a container.  Additional bulbs will be for sale.  Presented by Merry Savoy of Fancy Leaf Caladiums.

Call to reserve your space 772-464-4672; $10 for Heathcote Members and $15 for non-members.

Summer Camp Concludes with World of Weather

Children gathered on the Main Lawn for Day 5 of our camp. The kids made paper helicopters and airplanes to play with in our summer breeze. Miss Nan used a globe to show where in the world tornadoes are most likely to form. She demonstrated this wind vortex with a water vortex in the Reflection Garden pool. Then the children created a water vortex through a neat experiment with soda bottles, a washer, and duct tape.

 campday 5 - 5 (Mobile)
 campday 5 - 10 (Mobile)

After a bit of summer fun with balls, Frisbees, and small golf clubs, everyone gathered to create an edible rainbow above a palm garden out of veggies and fruit. Certificates for campers capped off the week of fun and learning.

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