Capturing the attention of those beyond the “usual suspects” of botanical garden enthusiasts often requires creative leveraging of all available assets. These assets may include emblematic “umbrella” species outside of the plant kingdom. In the case of the Vallarta Botanical Garden (VBG), jaguars and parrots have become “poster children” for inspiring people to protect the forests these animals rely upon. The ways in which the thriving presence of these animals help determine overall forest health make for compelling cases to even those not particularly enthralled with plants. 


N. Gerlowski, Vallarta Botanical Garden, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico; D. Friedeberg, Panthera México, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico; P. Zale, Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania; T. Thibault, Huntington Library, Art Collections, & Botanical Gardens, San Marino, California; T. McGrain, The Lost Bird Project, New York, New York