Rain Bird, a leading manufacturer and provider of irrigation products and services, and the American Public Gardens Association (APGA), announced a partnership to celebrate the role of America’s public gardens in educating the public on the importance of environmental preservation through the formation of the first National Public Gardens Day, May 8, 2009.

Scheduled for the Friday preceding Mother’s Day Weekend 2009, National Public Gardens Day will be supported by a local, regional and national awareness and education campaign that includes broadcast public service announcements, media partnerships, local and national spokespersons and media tours all focused on communicating the importance of building sustainable environments through improved plant management and water conservation.

“As a founding partner of National Public Gardens Day, Rain Bird is excited to join the APGA in showcasing the incredible contributions made by the nation’s public gardens in plant conservation, environmental education, ecosystem management, species preservation and the efficient use of water,” said Dave Johnson, Rain Bird’s Director of Corporate Marketing. “This event is a natural fit for Rain Bird’s Intelligent Use of Water philosophy. We aim to create a greater public understanding of the benefits provided by public gardens and green spaces in every community.”

In celebration of botanical gardens, conservatories, educational gardens and historical landscapes, many of the APGA’s 500 member institutions will mark the day with special events and activities for schools, families and thousands of visitors to explore and discover their local public garden. Many of the activities will continue throughout the busy Mother’s Day Weekend, offering visitors time to enjoy the beauty of the gardens while learning about each garden’s commitment to education, research and environmental stewardship.

“Public gardens play an increasingly important role in educating present and future generations on the importance of environmental stewardship through preservation of earth’s natural resources,” said Dan Stark, Executive Director of the APGA. “National Public Gardens Day will not only be a time for families and enthusiasts to enjoy the gardens, but will also showcase the achievements and expertise provided by public gardens as well as their commitment to education and outreach programs that are vital to people’s appreciation and understanding of the irreplaceable value of plants.”