This large and beautiful modular botanical garden consists of the main exhibition building and the embedding gardens with lawns, trees, benches and a pond. The entry is free, so all LEGO mini figures can enjoy picknicks, feed the birds, drink a coffee, kiss a frog or just sit on one of the benches and relax.

Design Strategy

During the design, I tried to follow the following strategic principles:

  • Build a large and beautiful botanical garden.
  • Ensure technical, architectural and esthetic fit with the world of modular LEGO buildings.
  • Close the building on all sides.
  • Ensure a consistent inner logic of the whole setup.
  • Provide an extremely flexible layout for usage in different settings without modification.
  • Make sure the design works with both standard base plates and MILS.
  • Base the brick inventory on cheap, standard LEGO sets to facilitate brick sourcing at low cost.
  • Primarily use the bricks of those LEGO sets and minimize usage of extra parts.
  • Integrate nice little stories with minifigs and animals into the setup
  • Move the majority of the beautiful plants from the original LEGO friends set mainly to the outside, so they can be seen better from minifigs and humans.
  • Actually build it (instead of just designing it digitally) and see what really works and what not.

The design has been validated by actually building the MOC in reality, as you can see on the pictures.

Required parts

The MOC is based on:

  • LEGO Friends Botanical Garden, set no. 41757 (3x)
  • LEGO Bonsai Tree, set no. 10281

Additional parts include base plates, tiles for the pedestrian walks, street lights, bricks for the garden wall and a few extra parts (mainly for the building).

Despite the large size of the MOC, it’s still really a low cost build. I bought the LEGO Friends sets for around 50 EUR each, the Bonsai Tree for somewhat like 30 EUR, and the additional parts (all genuine LEGO parts) were also not too costly. Total cost must have been no more than 250 EUR, I guess. Not bad for a 64×64 building…

Some of the additional parts are mainly for beautification of the garden, and not necessarily required.

The whole setup can be put on standard base plates or MILS. If put on MILS, the area around the pond can be modified in a way that it does not need to elevate 4 plates over base plate, but keeps level with the MILS base. The same applies for the trees, which can also be rooted into the MILS plates.

Flexible layout

A special feature of this MOC is its superior flexibility when deploying it to your city. That means: the dimensions of the overall garden are flexible!

We have LEGO parts in our hands, so let’s use them as such!

The overall assembly consists out of the following components:

  • The building with pedestrian walk in the front (48×32)
  • Attachable pedestrian walk left (8×32)
  • Attachable pedestrian walk right (8×32)
  • Garden with pond and pedestrian walks on two sides (32×32)
  • Garden with large tree and pedestrian walks on two sides (32×32)

There are various options to assemble the different components.

The most important ones are:

  • The building alone: 48×32.
  • The building alone with both attachable pedestrian walks on the sides: 64×32.
  • The building alone with one of the attachable pedestrian walks on the sides: 56×32.
  • The building with the garden components, assembled as a square with the attachable pedestrian walks all around: 64×64.
  • The building, assembled with the outside garden on both sides of the building, 112×32 (112 = 3,5 x 32).

Other assembly combinations are also possible without modifications of the MOC.

MILS transition

I transited the assembly to MILS due to my overall LEGO city strategy.

This is the MILS base for the main building (two 2×2 bricks are still missing on the right edge):

Modular LEGO Botanical Garden: MILS transition

The result is quite convincing.

As you can see, the pond is now on the same level with the lawn. The encasing that was necessary in the standard baseplate version is no longer required.

Next Steps

I am not sure if people are interested in getting building instructions for this MOC. If there is an audience I might compile some instructions one day. Let me know what you think!

Thanks for your feedback.

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