Whenever you think of “bamboo,” Alabama is the last place you expect to find an abundance of it, right? Well, there’s a bamboo forest right here in the “Heart of Dixie,” and it’s incredible.

Hidden away in Wilderness Park, located in Prattville, is a beautiful bamboo forest that was once used by the U.S. military during the Vietnam era. And in 1982, it became the first park of its kind developed inside city limits in the United States. Many areas of this park have bamboo stalks as tall as 60 feet, and with a trunk diameter of 6 inches. Besides bamboo, several other varieties of plants can be found within the forest, including Alabama’s second largest beech tree.

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If you’re wondering how an abundance of bamboo ended up in Wilderness Park, here’s the story:

Sometime during the 1940s, a man living in Autauga County received a packet of exotic bamboo seeds in the mail. This man was a former owner of the land before the city of Prattville acquired it. It’s quite uncommon to find bamboo in the American South, and now there’s a 26-acre park (Wilderness Park) covered in it. It’s very strange, yet amazing!

As you make your way through the center of the forest, you’ll think you’ve entered another world. It truly is that incredible! Just don’t expect to see any pandas during your visit. However, do expect to make many memories. Without a doubt, Wilderness Park is a beautiful place that everyone should experience at least once.

Wilderness Park
800 Upper Kingston Rd
Prattville, AL 36067

Have you ever visited Wilderness Park? If so, we’d love to hear about your experience below!

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