all the electric bluebonnets
Dazzling immersive light and music experience returns to illuminate Houston Botanic Garden
An internationally acclaimed holiday lights/music event, Lightscape, will make a highly anticipated return to the Houston Botanic Garden this winter.
Back for its second year, the outdoor illuminated trail includes stunning new immersive installations — in addition to well-loved favorites — set to seasonal tunes along a winding path through the garden. More than 80 percent of this year’s trail will feature installations never before seen in Houston, including a spectacular display of bluebonnets, an installation appropriately unique to The Lone Star State.
The installation Framed by Mandylights sees 20 geometric arches lined with brilliant color-changing, pixel-mapped LED fittings to create a unique tunnel of light effect with a distinctly modern edge.
And The Nautilus Forest, also by Mandylights, draws from both nature and precise geometry to create an illuminated forest of spiraling trees, with more than 40,000 individually controlled RGB pixelS. Each of the 24 trees stands up to 15 feet tall; together they merge into a meandering forest that urges visitors to enter and perhaps lose themselves.
In addition to basking in the wonder evoked by the immersive light installations on the trail, visitors will also enjoy festive food and drinks, including fire pits for roasting s’mores, in the garden’s inviting Pine Grove and spacious Culinary Garden.
“Lightscape is back! For anyone who missed the uniquely artistic and festive holiday lights experience at the Houston Botanic Garden last year, you won’t want to miss it this year,” said Claudia Gee Vassar, president of the Houston Botanic Garden, in a statement. “Favorites like the Winter Cathedral, Neon Tree, and Fire Garden will return, along with new creations by artists from across the globe. The artistry of the Lightscape installations are a perfect complement to the natural beauty of our diverse plant collections, creating an exquisite and memorable holiday experience for families and friends.”
Lightscape doesn’t actually open to the public until Friday, November 18 and runs on select evenings through January 1, 2023. Those interested can secure tickets starting Wednesday, August 24.
Timed tickets – at 15-minute intervals – are $28 for adults and $18 for children. Those with garden memberships receive a $2 discount off timed ticket prices. There are a limited number of off-peak nights during the run with reduced timed ticket rates. Flex passes – offering an extended entry window – are also available.
For those preparing a visit: Timed entry slots and parking are limited each evening, to give attendees space to enjoy each moment along the trail, per the garden. Based on the overwhelming popularity of last year, organizers expect several nights to quickly sell out.
Lightscape runs November 18-January 1, 2023 at Houston Botanic Garden, 1 Botanic Ln. For hours, tickets, and more information, visit the official site.